Withered Shades
(Solitude Productions)

My nice hometown Hamburg is for sure not really a blazing light at the night sky of extreme Metal. From the glorious Heavy Metal days of the eighties bands like GAMMA RAY are still the ruling force in town but newcomer like the deadly dedicated Doom fanatics OPHIS are maybe in the position to change this status quo(slightly supported by other underground bands like NEGATOR and DARK AGE!). And from the first second the abyss is calling and the call is so intensive and loud that it will become quite hard for all fans of this style to resist. The band has been quite active since the release of “Stream Of Misery” in 2007 and even if Germany will never become the Doom nation number one is the latest OPHIS creation via Solitude Productions – a Russian label fully dedicated to this style – a real step forward. The album starts impressively with ‘The Halls Of Sorrow’ a track which combines massive guitar walls, drums of doom and perfect supporting lyrics and vocals to one of the best German Doom tracks since years. Especially the combination works with a nearly 15 minutes track raging from the calm moments of pitch black solitude to more or less double bass supported structures of hate. At the end the perfect choice for the opening slot on “Withered Shades”! Over the whole playing time OPHIS are in the position to demonstrate that Doom Metal has a lot of facets – maybe slightly supported by the fact that minor Death Metal elements are not unfamiliar to the sound of the Greek snake – even if I have to admit that “The Halls Of Sorrow” is offering the best dose of hate, solitude and despair. Hopefully the release of “Withered Shades” is opening further doors for this band. The album shows definitely their 100 % dedication. This time it’s very easy to agree to support your local underground, for further info check following links: www.ophisdoom.de, www.myspace.com/ophisdoom, www.solitude-prod.com

Matthias Auch

Matthias Auch

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