Wednesday 13 September 2023

Kommandant - Titan Hammer

Labels: Aeternitas Tenebrarum Musicae Fundamentum/Maltkross

Formats: Vinyl/CD/Tape/Digital

Release Date: 20 Jan 2023


1. The Arrival

2. Titan Hammer

3. Atlantean Deathmarch

4. Siberian Overthrow

5. Sublimation Of Resistance

6. Spannungsfelder

7. The Sentinel

8. Mechanised Annihilator

A week without writing/being tethered to social media has been very much needed. I did promise in my last post (or the one before) that I'd try to write about another release from 2023 and here it is. Titan Hammer by US death/black metal band Kommandant was released in January via ATMF, the Italian label that's host to the likes of Lustre, Falaise, Titaan amongst others. 

Kommandant formed in 2004 (according to Discogs), before releasing their first demo Iron Hands on Scandinavia in 2006. They subsequently release another demo, an EP, six splits, two compilations and four full-lengths prior to Titan Hammer.

If you want martial/intense black metal then look no further than Kommandant on Titan Hammer. Album opener ‘The Arrival’ is aptly named because it marks the arrival of Kommandant in blasting, brutal fashion. Industrial in places, it’s amongst the fiercest black metal of the year so far (yes, I’m aware that more black metal has been released since January!). With that being said, the authoritative percussion and bass, coupled with the unexpectedly melodic guitar work seems to enhance the already ice-cold vocals.

The title-track ‘Titan Hammer’ continues the blasting intensity (that will no doubt be a huge element throughout the album), whilst growing in urgency. The organic percussive sound that builds towards the song’s end Is delightfully grim. There are some more obvious martial elements to Kommandant’s black metal and the slow (death)march of ‘Atlantean Deathmarch’ exhibits their flare for weaving tempos that appear slower. The blasts still disguise it though.

‘Siberian Overthrow’ drags you back in a more rabid direction. It’s a sound that reminds me of icier bands like Immortal, if they crossed paths with Blut Aus Nord and Krieg (maybe?). Kommandant’s death metal influences, which were fleetingly mentioned in the opening paragraph are few and far between so far, at least to my ears.

I can really get behind the percussive might of ‘Sublimation Of Resistance’, especially as it sounds a little more on the experimental side of the spectrum. At this point I’ve gotta say that I’m not trying to make this review into something it’s not, so I’m going to try and stop with the (not so) semi-intellectual speak, because that’s one thing I ain’t. I want barbaric, insanity inducing noise from music at times and it’s delivered here perfectly. 

The eery, bass-heavy instrumental ‘Spannungsfelder’ is a strangely welcome beast and while it’s shorter than other songs on Titan Hammer, it provides a moment of breath before Kommandant flies headfirst into penultimate song ‘The Sentinel’, which is devoured by the percussion and vocals, leaving the haunting guitar work nestling unfairly in the background.

That guitar work is more prominent again on album closer ‘Mechanized Annihilator’ and as album closers go, it’s frighteningly tight. I know that no band intends for their album to become looser towards the end but the controlled and proficient manner in which Kommandant calls time on Titan Hammer is excellent.

Unapologetic US black metal has never sounded so good.

You can stream and purchase Titan Hammer digitally via ATMF below:-

You can also purchase the album on CD and vinyl from ATMF below, alongside other merch and releases from Kommandant:-

A tape version has also been released via French label Maltkross -

Kommandant -


Maltkross -

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