Exist In Ruin
Exist In Ruin EP

Seattle’s Exist in Ruin is a symphonic black/death metal brainchild of one ‘Teren’, who plays guitar and bass and does the drum programming. But for the project’s debut EP (released digitally earlier this summer, but picked up by Italy’s Wormholedeath to re-release) he has a host of guest and session musicians helping him out: Jonah Weingarten (Pyramaze, Catalyst Crime) provides the lush orchestration, César Moreira (Enblood, Cult Burial) delivers a mix of rasps and growls, Jessy Christ (NZGL, Syndo-syS) adds some female vocals,  João Miguel (Enblood, STONESUN) throws in the solos and leads as does Konstantin Raydovski (Matakka) with  Sebastian Bracht (Sophicide, Dahlian) adding some Metal Choir Vocals. Phew.

So what does this ambitious project sound like when all those folks come together? Pretty simple really... latter Dimmu Borgir.

That’s pretty much all you need to know really. Just listen to the opening bars of the EP’s title track. Weingarten delivers some very nice, dramatic, theatrical orchestration to a decent mix of blackened/death metal and when Jessy Christ comes in with her witchy vocals there’s a definite vibe of Agnete Kjølsrud on “Gateways” from the Abrahadabra album. So use that as sort of a starting point for Exist in Ruin‘s sound.

The 6 songs are all pretty well written, sound superb, and have enough death metal crunch (largely Moreira’s vocals) to go with the blackened/orchestral elements, so much so that it comes close to being more symphonic death metal akin to bands like Godiva or Scepticflesh and Rotting Christ at times.

The songwriting is pretty strong with some nice moments amid the 6 song, 27-minute EP, notably on the EP’s back end such as the standout “Paradigm”, “Scourge” and closer “Although I live, I Die”. Everything is polished professional and enjoyable, especially in my current mode of listening to anything with symphonic or orchestration involved.

A very promising project that Teren looks to be building here. I’ll be interested to see if he keeps a revolving door of folks involved (Weingarten in particular needs to stay involved) and I look forward to hearing more.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
December 16th, 2022

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