Grave Miasma
Odori Sepulcrorum

Profound Lore Records are putting out some killer bands over the last several years and you can add London’s Grave Miasma to that ever growing list. In 2009 they released the outstanding Exalted Emanation ep and followed it up a year later with another ep, Realm of Evoked Doom. I can say without a shadow of a doubt that their debut album, Odori Sepulcrorum, is their crowning achievement so far. “Death’s Meditative Trance” opens up the album in a very doomy and heavy style. The guitar melodies at the 3.15 part over the double bass drums will level houses far and wide. The alternating speeds are also a plus on the song and entire album.

Vocals are outstanding and for comparison look no further than Darkthrone’s Soulside Journey and Belial’s Wisdom of Darkness for what’s in store for you. Brutal, old school and evil! Man, the 5 minute mark is thunderous and epic and rolls towards the end in a steamroller like fashion. “Ascension Eye” opens with a thunderous drum tone and the atmosphere during this 7 minute number will drown you in the dense and cavernous riffs. “Seven Coils”, the album’s longest track, clocking in at over 8 minutes has such a doomy heaviness that their fellow countrymen, Indesinence come to mind, as soon as I hear certain parts of this great and wondrous album. The 1 minute mark eventually erupts into a brutal blasting pattern that if you’re left standing after this part than you’re a friggin zombie. “Ossuary”, the album’s closure, is another fantastic song that oozes doom, death and brutality.

The production is the best the band has ever achieved and those dense, cavernous and outstanding riffs come through in perfect brutal fashion, but you can make out the chords and it’s very memorable. Amongst all the evilness it’s great that I can remember the songs. Drums sound great with some nice bottom end bass guitar to round things out. I am a bit confused as to what the multi paneled layout is supposed to represent, which includes the cover. The cover listed in this review is actually the back panel that the band lists as the album cover. However the cover is some dark artwork that is tough to pick out what the hell is happening. The band logo is small, on the cover, with the song titles and label logo on the front. Almost seems as a mistake, from the manufacturing company, as this is normally what the back of a cd looks like. The digi-pack spine also is blank and has no band or album name logo-wtf?? The paneled booklet is nice and lyrics and pics are included. Despite this strange layout, it kinda fits Grave Miasma. They are a heavy, dark and evil form of doom/death and some black metal leanings.

Odori Sepulcrorum is one of the elite for 2013, for sure. Buy or Die!!

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Frank Rini
November 11th, 2013

Comments

  1. Commented by: SRK

    Yes, essential death metal!


  2. Commented by: Frank Rini

    SRK-thx for reading and yes this cd rules. If you can get hold of their prior 2 eps I urge you to get them. Tough to find, but worth it. Still this is their crowning achievement\m/


  3. Commented by: E. Thomas

    This isnt clicking with me for some reason. its just ‘there’


  4. Commented by: F. Rini

    Yeah, Erik, sometimes those dark cavernous riffs take me time as well to get used to. I already had their 2 eps, so I knew what to expect. For me they fall into the category of having to first listen to it without background noise, shit going on, requires more of my attention, then I get into it, kinda like when I first heard Ulcerate yrs ago.


  5. Commented by: SRK

    Frank, yep good review. I got /Exalted Emanation/ a while ago, so was really looking forward to this. Also, if you haven’t already checked them out, try Embrace of Thorns’ recent material—stylistically they are quite close to Grave Miasma, more so than any of the other recent “dark” death metal bands.

    Both of the Grave Miasma EPs are still widely available, especially from European distros.


  6. Commented by: Listener

    Errrrm…not sure what the cover comments are about. The front cover is the artwork, the back cover is the logo and tracklisting. Doesn’t take a genius. The full thing folds out to reveal the full artwork with the front cover as the centre image:

    https://fbcdn-sphotos-g-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash2/254657_558147824244323_1243572757_n.jpg?lvh=1

    See?


  7. Commented by: F. Rini

    SRK-thank you for the rec, I’ll ck ’em out! Listener-are you a band member? When I do reviews I do complete ones, which also includes descriptions re: the cover and inserts. This gives the buyer an understanding of what they’re getting. MY review specifically details the cover and maybe mine is misprinted, not sure. So first and foremost, to you sir, what does the cover represent? It’s very dark, looks like some altar/entrance, to me the other panels are dark. Also the above image, while I understand is the cover, the way mine folds out, has no band logo or track listing and when put together is actually the back panel. The front panel being one of the dark panels with the logo, track listing, etc..what I put in the review. Just asking for clarification and please let’s not get into name calling regarding referring to people’s intellect or lack of. Regards, Frank


  8. Commented by: SRK

    I think this is just a bit of confusion about which panel should be called the “front” cover and which should be called the “back” cover, because it seems that PFL have mixed up the normal organisation of a digipak.

    Normally with digipaks, the “front” cover has the main bit of artwork, as well as the band name + album title printed on it, and this folds out to the left. The “back” cover holds the CD tray, and has the track listing on it.

    But on this album, while the panel that folds out to the left has the band name + album title printed on it, it also has the tracking listing, but it doesn’t have the main artwork; whereas the panel that holds the CD tray is the reverse of the main artwork.

    So if you look at Listener’s image, the CD tray is on the reverse of the middle panel; the band name + album title + track listing are printed on the right panel, which is also the outermost panel.


  9. Commented by: Listener

    Not a band member, just a listener. The front is the panel with the main artwork. The way it folds doesn’t dictate anything. It’s not a misprint, just the best way of packaging the full thing in a way that compliments the artwork. It’s different to the norm because the artwork has been approached in a different way – with it being designed around a main image that extends from the centre outwards, whereas most album artwork is designed as a single panel. Look at it a different way, rather than putting it into your usual expectations.

    As for the artwork itself, I read an interview that explains it best:

    “The cover was painted by Denis Forkas Kostromitin, an esoteric artist highly regarded within the art community. Borrowing concepts from Egyptian, Mesopotamian (as evident with the unorthodox portrayal of the Wedjat and architectural nods towards the Sphinx) and Greek mythology, the painting depicts death as a portal to a higher dwelling, a vessel for both decay and rejuvenation predominately reflected in the Greek legend of Oedipus.”

    I don’t see all of these things mentioned, but it’s a great concept and fits perfectly.


  10. Commented by: F. Rini

    SRK and Listener-thx for all your help in all this. I like getting answers to certain things I have issues with sometimes and you 2 were helpful. At the end of the day, like I said, it’s ultimately about the music and the cd is ferocious! Frank


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