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Review: Forhekset - First Step to Nowhere
First Step to Nowhere

Label: Independent
Year released: 2007
Duration: 19:43
Tracks: 4
Genre: Black/Death


Review online: December 9, 2007
Reviewed by: Lars Christiansen
Readers' Rating
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Rated 3.33/5 (66.67%) (3 Votes)

Well with a name like Forhekset, I initially thought this would be some sort of early Satyricon worship, what with Forhekset (meaning 'Bewitched' in Norwegian) being one of Satyricon's most revered tracks. However, it turns out these Italians play a highly professional brand of melody laced blackened Death Metal, more akin to the likes of Dissection (in fact, the band actually started out as a covers band kicking out not only Dissection tunes, but also the occasional Death and Carcass cover according to their bio).

This is a world apart from the majority of demos you hear, simply for the fact that the songwriting is actually of an excellent standard, showing the ability to make the most of a hooky melody and couple it with imaginative riffs. The guitars and bass are both clearly distinguishable from each other (quite often the bass stretching the boundaries of usual bass work, not being afraid to venture outside the realms of simply following the riffs) and the vocals feature a nicely Nodtveidt-like hiss about them. Even the drums are a breath of fresh air, merely for actually being 'real' as opposed to the usual mechanical drum-machine misfortunes you tend to come across more often than not in the realm of the demo. However, the main difference these guys make (for me at least) is their frequent usage of acoustic guitar passages splashed around the song structures, adding a good sense of dynamism to the proceedings (again similarly to Dissection), helping them to stand out from the crowd of Darkclones and Burzum-ites.

When all this is all held together in a good production, you can't ask for much more when it comes to demo material. Proficient musicians, skilled songwriters and yet another band I'll have to keep my eye on in the future. Well worth checking out.

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