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Review: Incarion - 1521

Label: Misantropia Records
Year released: 2021
Duration: 33:32
Tracks: 8
Genre: Black Metal

Rating: 4.25/5

Review online: April 16, 2022
Reviewed by: Mjölnir
Readers Rating

Rated 4.43/5 (88.57%) (7 Votes)

Incarion are among the oldest Black Metal acts to hail from the Philippines, a country not particularly known for its Metal scene and certainly not very friendly towards Metal for the longest time. As such, it's easy to see why the band's output has been scant despite being around for so long, only managing a demo and a handful of splits and EPs with years between them for most of their career. Work on this album was initially started around a decade ago, but various personal issues kept it dormant until the band decided to rewrite and rerecord it in 2020. Now, nearly two decades since their inception, we finally have their full-length debut, 1521, and it goes to show that they have much more going for them than longevity.

Incarion work in a very old-school strand of Black Metal that finds itself at the intersection between the first and second-wave sounds. You get plenty of blistering speed and harsh tremolo riffs like you'd find in Gorgoroth or old Immortal, but they also have a dirty melodic sensibility that occasionally sounds Sabbathine in quality, particularly on the intro and outro tracks. I find myself wishing they explored the latter aspect of their sound more, as it stands out as more interesting and distinct, but the band goes at it with all the blazing energy you need to get past how orthodox the rest of it is. There aren't any real standout tracks, but every song has killer riffs, venomous, almost reptilian rasps, and a sharp atmosphere of misanthropy and hatred that defines the genre. A strong album from a band finally getting the chance to shine for their region.

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