Octagon
Death Fetish

In the deep south of these United States of America a man known as Mortigan stands defiant in the midst of trend whores and mall metal junkies, opting instead to (basically) go it alone and make raw, minimalist black metal rife with sordid tales of sadomasochism and bizarre fetishes. Performing under the moniker Octagon, new album Death Fetish finds Mortigan responsible for all vocals, guitars, bass, lyrics, and production, while a fellow by the name of Krimson beats the skins. (Warning: Keep the album artwork away from any minors in your home).

Death Fetish contains some pretty decent black metal with just enough groove and tunefulness to warrant repeat listens. I should note that Death Fetish does not consist of “new material. It was actually written during 1998 – 2001 and recorded in 2002. The style is basic and relatively varied from track to track, not to mention full of bad attitude and obscenity worship. Odd as it may sound, what makes the music work for me is that I don’t have to think too damn much about it; it is neither needlessly complex or speed-addled and blurry; it is simply riff-centric and driving, the kind of thing that induces involuntary head nodding. I like the jagged guitar textures, melody lines, and tone as well. The instrumentals – “Humiliation March” and “Her Fettered Wings” – are just as notable, if not more so, than the tracks with vocals. The former works more as an introduction and features a lead guitar line that is as hypnotizing as it is haunting; the latter is a nearly eight-minute, shape shifting number that can be rather catchy at times.

For purposes of clarification, Death Fetish is no black metal juggernaut. It is simply a good example of how sticking to the basics and never sacrificing feel or groove for complexity can result in an enjoyably nihilistic experience.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Scott Alisoglu
September 30th, 2009

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