I really respect what The Ukraine’s Metal Scrap Records is doing. They recently celebrated 20 years of existence and they promote the shit out of home grown/local bands. The thing is, 95% of them are terrible. In their most recent slew of offerings albums by Navalm, Ram-page, Halberd and Vadikan made me literally cringe. However, once in a blue moon, as evidenced by last year’s Instorm album they somehow release something decent. And here is another one, the second album from the oddly named Ukrainian black metal act Def/Light.

I had no idea what to expect when hitting ‘play’ due to the band’s name, but supposedly Def/Light means ‘Defilers of Light’, cos you know Def/Light sounds much more black metal, right?. Any way name aside, Transcendevil is actually a pretty robust, solid symphonic black metal band with an obvious Dimmu Borgir influence. But I also hear plenty of other stylistic luminaries here such as Anorexia Nervosa, Veneficium, Vesperian Sorrow, Carach Angren, Stormlord and others. Not that Def/Light is in the same conversation as those guys, but they are certainly as entertaining, epic and bombastic.

The band apparently has been around since 2001 and started as a death metal band, and some of that has carried over, as they have a very solid, heavy guitar tone and rhythm section, to the point where the drums almost sound cyber metal-ish and can be over powering. The keys are lavish and epic, but not overly theatrical or cheesy. Just a solid back ground of realistic sounding, sweeping brass and string synths with the odd piano break. It’s pretty well done and while the songs themselves are not great, it’s all pretty solid.

The vocals are a mix of standard black metal rasps and some impressive deeper death metal bellows and everything sounds great. Other than the intro, there is no filler as the songs are all pretty bombastic and mix big sounding majestic blasts and slower moody marches such as Neo-Dont-s”, “Dark Liturgy” and “Antikrist Tábor” but can reign things in as heard on “In Front of Soldier Eyes” where things take a more somber turn and epic, impressive instrumental closer “Septem Million”.

Let’s hope Metal Scrap unearths more bands like this and less crappy melo-death or Gothic metal. Good stuff.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
April 14th, 2014


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