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Review: Fathomhell - Non Pietatem Erit
Non Pietatem Erit

Label: Independent
Year released: 2012
Duration: 24:09
Tracks: 6
Genre: Black Metal


Review online: November 29, 2013
Reviewed by: Christopher Foley
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Rated 5/5 (100%) (1 Vote)

Here we have the debut EP from Spanish black metal upstarts Fathomhell, featuring the tandem of Necroghoul and Ludwighar, who spew forth a decidedly Scandinavian approach to the style. Expect ethereal picked minor chord guitar attacks, acoustic interludes, venomous Emperor-style outbursts and of course vitriolic, snarling vocals. One thing not to expect would be anything original as Fathomhell plough some already well tempered earth across this release.

Whilst Non Pietatem Erit is everything you've heard before, they play the style like some of the masters of the genre, and for the most part honor acts such as Dissection, early Enslaved, or even Dawn. This works well – at least for me – as they're playing one of the finer strains of black metal. I think despite its relatively synthetic production values which are more in line with recent years, the material itself could have easily come out mid-late nineties, as this is exactly what you'd expect to hear come out of Sweden, or even some of the more orthodox Norwegian acts.

Fathomhell's mix of melody and aggression is well done across the board, with a textured approach that rings out particularly evident in the guitars. There are a lot of cool melodic lead lines, and the tone really gives an authentic black metal air. When opting to tear heads Fathomhell adopt the aforementioned Emperor-style outbursts, with those shimmering, power chord sliding riffs that typified Anthems To The Welkin At Dusk. Between the polar hostile and melodious sections Fathomhell oft opt for a proud mid-paced march, which I found fairly reminiscent of Frost-era Enslaved, with a slight of their folksy swagger, although certainly lending more from their oftentimes odd rhythmic approach.

With a good mix of tried and true conventions, a solid dynamic approach, and above all some genuinely cool songs, I'd say Fathomhell may well be an act to watch out for. Whilst there are a few rough edges to their debut EP, largely coming from the decidedly synthetic production values, I'd say this is definitely worth checking out – particularly if you have a love for the Swedish sound, as despite other prominent influence, the Swedish strands of DNA dominate. On the whole, this is some good stuff.

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