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THAW
THAW
Decay / Advance
(Witching Hour Productions)
88:20min

Honestly, I am not amused. Normally it takes several years and some kind of reputation and prominence until a band releases a compilation with songs taken from the first demos. So I do not know if this output is really something the underground has been waiting for. The first sign of life by Polish based THAW was the demo entitled "Decay", released 2010. Another demo ("Advance") followed 2012, the two full-length albums "Thaw" and "Earth Ground" in 2013 and 2014 were flanked by three singles, two of them split releases with fellow countrymen ECHOES OF YUL and OUTRE. So why does a band with several outputs during the last two years release old (which in fact are not really antique) demos, although they are remastered? I do not know, maybe there was a immense desire by the followers or some kind of trick to fulfill a contract with the record label. Oh well, I just forgot to mention that this double CD is limited to 500 copies. So I guess there may be a new edition next year or so. But let us put such speculations aside and take a closer look to the music. Sludge Black Metal with heavy instrumental / ambient influences would be the best description. About the word "sludge" - well, this term has become a buzzword some years ago when all and everything was labeled as Sludge, I guess even BLACK SABBATH were declared the forefathers of Sludge. But for the dragging and chewy kind of Black Metal THAW are performing it is the most fitting category. Sadly this enjoyable Black Metal is constantly interrupted by the above mentioned industrial or ambient (or whatever description may fit) dissonances. To my ears senseless and boring synthesizer / keyboard noise which causes toothache. All in all the nearly 90 minutes playtime are a fifty-fifty matter. One half well done Sludge Black Metal, other half annoying industrial / ambient music. www.facebook.com/thawnoise, www.witchinghour.pl

Mirco Szymyslik

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