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The Spell Of Retribution
(Wicked World / Earache Records)

THE CHASM luckily never really gave a shit about being the "next big thing" and are the living proof that there actually IS a possibility to still create a unique style within the boundaries of extreme Metal! Their newest album "The Spell Of Retribution" (their first for the Earache subdivision Wicked World) is another very fine example of that and therfore really deserves your attention! Just like on their previous full length ("Conjuration Of The Spectral Empire") they kick things off with an instrumental track... and in that department 'From The Curse A Scourge' has become one of the best compositions in extreme Metal for quite a while! The song is blessed with a great powerful, razorsharp METAL riffing in the good old SLAYER tradition, an extremely cool leading melodyline (which somehow has this vintage DEATH ANGEL 'Ultra-Violence' feel to it) on top of it and gets delivered with a very apocalyptic overall feel to it! No matter if you agree here or not - fact is, this opener easily graps your attention and sets you in the right mood for the remaining songs on the record! 'The Omnipotent Codex' is another example of the band's godly raw old school Death / Thrash Metal, combining vintage KREATOR with a SLAYER / POSSESSED kinda feel, yet maintaining the typical THE CHASM trademarks. Awesome and totally crushing riffing in the middle section here! The rather midpaced 'The Eclipse: Monument To The Empire' is a 9 ˝ minutes roller coaster ride within the unique boundaries of THE CHASM's own musical world of mystical Death / Thrash. The song is seperated in three chapters, with lots of twists and turns in terms of the song's feeling, very well arranged though and with their very own, unmistakeable atmosphere to it. That's actually what THE CHASM seperates the most from the rest of all the old school Death / Thrashers: they focus on very long, epic songs and a very complex songwriting style, which despite its brilliance, sometimes could need a little catchier approach here and there. Just like in 'The Fortress' for example, which is a very fine, speedy crusher in the best early POSSESSED manner! Don't get me wrong here - I really enjoy everything they come up with, but you're not always necessarily in the right mood to listen to all those little bits and pieces that get incorporated into their monuments of Death. So, a couple of shorter and more straight to the point tracks certainly would help to keep up the listener's attention next time! Apart from that, this is obviously another essential release that you shouldn't miss out on! Release date: November 08, 2004. All further info you may get at the band's official website

Frank Stöver

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