Siaskel
Jatenentolpen Thejin

While I’m sure upcoming reviews of the new Obituary and At the Gates albums  will get well deserved traffic and attention, it’s releases and the opportunity to do reviews of releases like this that keep me interested in metal and this whole reviewing thing.

Hailing from Chile, Siaskel’s debut album will more than likely be one of the more obscure releases I have covered of late, but it’s a release that needs more love and attention, and love and attention are what I do best. The first interesting thing about Siaskel  is that the band, along with Spanish, uses a long gone dialect of the Selk’nam,  (the band name Siaskel is from a Selk’nam deity and the album title means “obscure hate”)  an indigenous people in the Patagonian region of southern Argentina and Chile now extinct due to the European invasion of the early 20th century. Second, their style of black/death metal is rather well done with a perfect balance of filth and ash  mixed with sharpness and precision.

Tribal chanting opens the album with “Shuaken Caspi K’passh’kan”  and leads to a succinct 30 minutes of no nonsense savagery that has a little Scandinavian aura to it, despite the innate ethnic lyrics and language. It’s tightly played and rendered, but not clinically so and there are some searing melodies lurking about such as in “Howens”,”O’oke” and “Habshi”but it’s wrapped up in a savage construct that’s familiarly European (France’s Bliss of Flesh?) with its bite and South American with its bestial nature (Hacavitz?).

It gets a little sloppy at times, but that’s some of the primal charm and it does get nice and nasty once in a while such as “Nar Kra Hohopen” and “Mehn Arwens Mak Jaspen”, showing the band’s South American roots. 5 minute closer ‘”Henos” is as good as anything in the genre regardless og geography, and closes the album out perfectly and shows that quality metal can come from anywhere at anytime.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
October 10th, 2014

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