Sunday 3 December 2017

Barbarian Swords - Worms


1. I'm Your Demise
2. Outcast Warlords
3. Pure Demonology
4. Christian Worms
5. Total Nihilism
6. The Last Virgin On The Earth, Sodomized
7. Carnivorous Pussy
8. Requiem
9. Ultrasado Bloodbath

It snowed here the other day, but it was a pitiful amount and it just ended being really cold and gloomy. It meant that I have no inclination to venture out (apart from to work) so I started listening to  this album by Catalan black metal/doom band Barbarian Swords. Two sessions in an here I am. "Worms" is the second full-length from Catalan black/doom metallers Barbarian Swords. It follows their 2012 demo "Crusaders Of The Apocalypse" and 2014's debut full-length "Hunting Rats". It was released across all formats in January via Cimmerian Shade,  Satanath Records and The Ritual Productions. 

“Worms” is a lengthy beast and it begins with a curiously folk-like opening on I’m Your Demise, which carries on through the song in spite of the black metal barbarity. There’s melody (not the happy sort), rasping black-metal screams and down-tempo heaviness. The doom is really enjoyable and they weave it into their sound well. Barbarian Swords have done a pretty clever thing with Outcast Warlords, They’ve chosen to follow the slow tempo of the opener with another one. Most bands would just stick a fast one in there. Outcast Warlords itself is more akin to a doom/death song, at least until the vocals kick in. Gloriously nihilistic and evil. 

Their songwriting is well thought-out and it’s a point proved on Pure Demonology, with it’s fast/slow dynamic and grinding/blasting second half. The echo on the vocals is cool too. Something tells me their might be anti-religious undertones within Christian Worms. I’m not complaining though, as I can hate everything about organised religion, which is probably why I’m drawn to this unholy noise. Once again it’s a slow and lurching tome with a raw edge that bites. Another thing that Barbarian Swords likes to do is create atmosphere, so the little snippets of noise and samples here and they make the album flow and feel more imaginative. Total Nihilism is an example of that and it’s sound and make-up certainly reflects it’s title. 

The feedback/screeching guitar-work at the beginning of The Last Virgin On Earth, Sodomized (great title!) says all you need to know about the direction that Barbarian Swords are going in. Incredible doom that morphs into more death/black goodness. It’s great fun and also strangely mesmeric. The sample at the beginning on Carnivorous Pussy is just a little bit disturbing but it’s quick;y erased from your memory by a thrashing monster that’s the more urgent song on the album. The two songs that follow weigh in at almost thirty-minutes in their entirety. After that slightly light-hearted appetiser, Requiem drags you back down a gloomy path with nearly eighteen-minutes of slothenly blackened doom. Gloomy is actually a pretty good descriptor for this song, because everything abut it leads you to near despair (in a good way). 

Closing song Ultrasado Bloodbath contains bigger riffs and a ever so slight increase in tempo. Barbarian Swords are definitely at their best when ploughing that whole doom/black metal furrow and I have to say, it’s a unique take on it. The guitar work once again shows that no matter how heavy you try to be, traditional heavy metal ins’t far away and it’s pulled off well.  Barbarian Swords are great and they've created an album with it's own personality, which is becoming increasingly hard to do in this modern era.

Stream "Worms" and purchase it on all formats below:

You can also pick it up from the labels below:-

The Ritual Productions -

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