(Neverheard Distro / Fekete Terror Productions)
It hardly ever happens anymore that bands or labels send out physical copies of their releases, but HAMVAK goes all the way – not only in terms of getting his music heard, but especially when it comes to songwriting, brutality and technical proficiency… especially when it comes to brutality, but we’ll get to that in a second. The design of this tape that I found in my mailbox is mediocre at best but works surprisingly well: the cover image is very reminiscent of the art for INQUISITION’s "Magnificent Glorification Of Lucifer" and "Ominous Doctrines Of The Perpetual Mystical Macrocosm", but this is where the similarities end. Where INQUISITION puts the treble back in the Metal, HAMVAK is all about the bass. In fact, I haven’t heard a bass that high in the mix for quite a while… Hip Hop and related genres aside, obviously. AUTOPSY comes to mind, but I couldn’t really tell you why. HAMVAK (Hungarian for "bones", by the way) doesn’t even really sound like them, but for whatever mysterious reason, both bands evoke similar feelings in me. But I said ‘band’… HAMVAK is not a band, it’s a single person, which is especially impressive considering the fact that all the instruments on this demo, tape, EP, whatever it is were being played by just one person. From what I can tell, D, the hand and brain behind HAMVAK, is a Hungarian expat, now residing in Germany. And lo and behold, as if I could have guessed, there actually is a very Eastern European flavour to this whole affair: it sounds just as obscure and mysterious as it sound barbaric, triumphant and vicious. Equal parts Death and Black Metal make for a very convincing melange, a very, very dark one. No surprise really that Dead was obsessed with Eastern European landscapes. I can’t help but wonder what he would have thought about this piece of music. Me, I’ll be playing this more often than not and I’ll definitely keep an eye on the ossuary of HAMVAK. Stream this beast at https://hamvak.bandcamp.com or buy it from http://neverhearddistro.blogspot.com. More HAMVAK information at www.facebook.com/hamvak.