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Review: Open Grave - Fear
Open Grave
Fear

Label: Sunshine Ward Recordings
Year released: 2022
Originally released in: 2012
Duration: 30:32
Tracks: 10
Genre: Black Metal

Rating: 4.25/5

Review online: January 22, 2023
Reviewed by: Michel Renaud
Readers Rating
for:
Fear

Rated 3.5/5 (70%) (4 Votes)
Review

I had completely lost track of Open Grave over the years and was surprised to see they had a full-length album that had just been reissued in 2022, ten years after its initial release. Their demo The Heavens Cry Black Tears struck me back in the day (my first year listening to black and death metal) as raw, minimalistic and with an incredibly hateful vibe—not surprising for a band advertising themselves as "anti-human black metal."

Fear almost doesn't sound like the same band. The songs are way more complex, the sound heavier and richer, and overall more diverse. It's more melodic overall, but The Heavens... also had some of that despite its minimalistic approach. This album is closer to melodic yet raw and aggressive bands from the French scene as well as some USBM bands, though I can't say I'm reminded of any particular band. I said earlier that this almost doesn't sound like the same band, but despite this being a more all-out production, there's still some rawness that's reminiscent of their first demo and the piano bits have that same melancholic feeling. The songs are more memorable this time around, some of them even "rock and rolling" and calling for some headbanging and air-guitaring, whereas The Heavens... was an all-around slab of hate and despair. It's been more than ten years since this was released and there seems to be nothing else after that, so who knows if we'll see more blackened malevolence from Open Grave in the future.

Other related information on the site
Review: The Heavens Cry Black Tears (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
Interview with vocalist God Vomit on June 27, 2001 (Interviewed by Michel Renaud)
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