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VIETAH
VIETAH
Smalisty Žah
(I Hate Records)
58:12min

I'm not sure whether anybody reading these lines ever heard of the Belarusian one man band VIETAH before. So, here's the most important information beforehand. VIETAH, Belarusian for “old moon”, is the brainchild of a guy named Antarctis who also runs a band called BALROG. After the start in 2006, he released four albums under the VIETAH moniker, who recently all got re-released on vinyl through I Hate Records. Of course these re-releases are limited, 500 copies in coloured vinyl were made each. The second album “Smalisty Žah” that I want to tell you about here was put out on clear vinyl. So, what does VIETAH have to offer? Well, as some of you might have guessed, Antarctis offers us Black Metal here. But it's not this lo-fi Black Metal that's recorded in the basement at home a lot of these anonymised band have to offer. No, VIETAH offer a well balanced ride through the varieties of the genre. The base of the sound is atmospheric, even epic, but Antarctis learned his lessons in the origins of Black Metal as well. The riffing reminds pretty much of those old bands with a primal approach to darkness and coldness, like especially DARKTHRONE. Thus it's no wonder that the final 'Kvintesiencyja' is nothing less than a (well done) cover version of their 'Quintessence' off the “Panzerfaust” masterpiece with Belarusian lyrics. The sound that grew out of these influences is not that revolutionary but still too good to be overheard, especially the rather fast and rough title track 'Smalisty Žah' ('A Pitchy Horror') knows to catch me with its HELLHAMMEResque intro piece. In addition, there is the long and epic opener 'Zmjarcvielyja Krajavidy Praz Smaljany Pozirk Krumkacza' ('The Lifeless Landscapes Through The Pitchy Glance Of The Raven') and the also pretty epic 'Zdzjajsniennie' ('Fulfillment') with its melodic guitars in an IMMORTAL way. Well, on the other hand a few flaws are there as well, since the drum sound is rather clinical and artificial in some moments, and the too long boring instrumental 'Paslja Paunocznaja Ciszynja' ('After Midnight Silence') is as useful as a hole in the head. But that shouldn't keep those who like Black Metal from checking the band at www.facebook.com/vietah.official or https://vietah.bandcamp.com. You might also visit the label site: www.ihate.se

Thomas Meyer

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