Apocalyptic Necromancy

As much as I love what Dark Descent Records has done in 2011–and will continue to do so–they have to have a blight on their record at some point right? If I’m being brutally honest, for me it’s the second album from Philadelphia’s supposedly legendary death metal act Goreaphobia.

Listen. Just because you formed in 1988 and over twenty years ago rubbed shoulders with the likes of Suffocation and other early death metal acts, and even shared members with the likes of Master, Bloodstorm and Incantation, and even if you eventually released one 2 song single on Relapse Records, simply does not make you a legend. As already documented in your first album after twenty years of relative non-productivity (7 splits, demos and singles in 20 years), your comeback really wasn’t that highly regarded or necessary.

Apocalyptic Necromancy sounds just like you’d expect if a trio of 40 somethings tried to get back into the death metal game after a 20 year layoff. Even with their second attempt; it’s tired, worn out, and simply relies of its past. Coming with hints of  Master or Possessed with a dash of Germanic thrash due to a sort of early or primal death metal, that’s really thrash with slightly gruffer vocals and more ‘extreme’ lyrics,  and topped off with a rather unconvincing occult evil vibe, Goreaphobia simply don’t belong around in 2011.

Not that I don’t appreciate old school metal, regular readers of the site are surely aware that I’m an old school death metal guy at heart, but there’s nothing on this album that arouses me…musically speaking. Other than the production, which is pretty much spot on between thrash and death metal, the songs simply bash, smash, squeal and wheeze their way lifelessly through 48-minutes of yawn inducing material. I can’t recall a single memorable or defining riff or moment from the likes of  “Xurroth Rreeth N’Vez Helm (City of Rot and Decay)”, “Shroud of the Hyena (…..Innall Ninuttix…..)”, “Totem of the Vulture (…..Sirrix Noxhuun…..) ” or “Rust Worms & The Noxious Fevers They Bring”.  To add to the insult, the 7+ minute closure “White Wind Spectre” is actually painful to get through.

If only the music had been as appealing as the song titles.

A rare swing and a miss for Dark Descent. I know they’ve got a couple of grand slams remaining for the rest of the year, so I’m not too concerned.







[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
September 3rd, 2011


  1. Commented by: fork tongue

    I really liked this album. If it wasn’t such a great year for death metal it’d be up there for death metal album of the year for me.

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