Death at the Gates of Delirium

For me 2010 was where everything went far more digital and I’m not talking about just promotional CDs! Bands and labels started actually releasing their music digitally too: Shadow of the Colossus, Martolea, Origin of Darkness, We Are the Illusion, Demise of Gideon to name a few. All quality releases… but only available digitally. Adding to that quality is UK “un-label” Works of Ein and their first digital (and free) release, Death at the Gates of Delirium from the UKs esoteric, Lovecraftian death metal act Contaigeon. You say Contagion, I say Contaigeon, either way, this mysterious lot has immediately injected themselves into the UK’s gnarly death metal elite alongside Mithras, Sarpanitum, and Detrimentium.

Culling heavily from the backwards, discordant throes of Morbid Angel, Immolation and Incantation, as well appealing to fans of more recent acts like Portal, Vaesaleth and Mitochondrion, the aptly named Death at the Gates of Delirium is at times a swirling vortex of discordant, filthy death metal, punctuated by slabs of festering, crawling dirges.

Though not quite as utterly unfettered as Portal and their ilk, the strains of otherworldly chaos run rife through the cleaner Morbid Angel swirls and echoes and the layered, cavernous vocals do indeed imbue slithering giant tentacled beasts lurking in the mists. Throw in a few ambient/industrial soundscapes and the result is a slow controlled spiral into sonic insanity rather than a violent instant skullfuck by Cthulu.

As with most of this genre, the album isn’t so much about memorable riffs or structure, but a musical gateway to…well delirium and other unspeakable horrors. The songs blast, screech, rumble and lope with atonal and lethal but loose precision (notably icky standouts “The Following Darkness”, “Devoured by the Swarm” “Those in the Soil” and appropriately titled “Slithering Sickness”) and emanate that tangible sense of dread that you simply know when you hear. That all being said, Contaigeon have just a little more structure than their peers, especially when it comes to the albums numerous much slower, crawls like that litter the above tracks as well as the likes of pure ooze of “The Day the Earth Stood Dead” and slightly out of place “Curruption”.

But the band occasionally strings together,  dare I say ‘catchy’ numbers such as the chug of “Misery”, “Plague Lord” and “They Who Gnaw the Bones”, showing a little more than sheer noise dipping into a more controlled classic and groovy death metal prose, maybe signaling a transitional period in the bands direction during the writing recording process.

The fact this album is being given away for the mere price of a valid email address blows my mind, and any fans of death metal should grab this release and support truly underground (thematically and figuratively) acts.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
December 23rd, 2010


  1. Commented by: Jesse Wolf

    Whoa! Great review man. Definitely grabbing this now.

  2. Commented by: bast

    Yep, I like it, thank you

  3. Commented by: Scott Alisoglu

    Excellent review

  4. Commented by: Clauricaune

    Whenever I see a review here with the first couple of paragraphs full of obscure band names in bold, I know Erik wrote it.

    This sounds good. Gonna check it out.

  5. Commented by: theorifice

    And its often those bands I end up checking out and falling in love with!

  6. Commented by: terp

    I’m liking this. Enjoy the band’s philosophy & hope the label keeps the quality of their other releases high as well.

  7. Commented by: shaolinlambkiller

    This is a real shame it hasn’t been released on cd. I pretty much don’t bother downloading anything even if it’s free and I don’t pay much attention if I don’t have a physical copy of it. It basically as if it doesn’t exist to me.

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