Chuck Schuldiner Project

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Cauldron Black Ram - Slaver

Cauldron Black Ram has operated on the fringes of the blackened death metal scene for decades now. this group, which is at this point essentially a Mournful Congregation and Stargazer side project, is truly masterful. Their unique sounds are potent, gorgeous and doomed to drag you to hell. The bands uniquely primitive approach is counterbalanced with some wonderfully heavy and melodic guitar playing. For the previously uninitiated it's like a whole new side to what these musicians have been doing for so long.

Slaver thrills with the sort of dungeon crawling madness they evoke in their burbled vocals and crunching guitars. The pure feedback that closes 'Smoke Pours From The Orifices Of The Crematory Idol' is a stunning counterpoint - dragging on long enough that it can unsettle the listener. Few of the bands peers in the sort of primordial blackened death metal space are this capable of conjuring up truly disturbing sounds. Meanwhile, the unrelenting grooves of a track like 'Stones Break Bones' acts as a reminder that Slaver can do so much more than preceding Cauldron Black Ram releases - it's mesmerizing.

The band has taken a significant step forward with this record, and it has been well worth the six year wait. While Stalagmire was certainly a thrilling listen, this album feels like the bands logical next step. Cauldron Black Ram have come to define a certain type of Adelaide evil and they are far too much fun to spend time with. The massive production and gut wrenching songwriting really comes together here for something that I can't get enough of, it borders on the transcendent. Extreme metallers gotta love it.

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