Album Review – Imha Tarikat / Hearts Unchained – At War with a Passionless World (2022)

Vicious and vitriolic, full of raw anger and burning hatred, the new album by this German Black Metal entity will pulverize your senses mercilessly.

Vicious and vitriolic, full of raw anger and burning hatred, yet at the same time bursting with live and lingering on moments of astonishing beauty, Hearts Unchained – At War with a Passionless World, the third full-length opus by German Black Metal entity Imha Tarikat (Turkish for “extermination sect”), announces its inherent contradictions and struggles already in the title. Recorded and produced by the band’s mastermind Kerem Yilmaz (aka Ruhsuz Cellât), mixed by Michael Zech, mastered by Victor Santura (of Triptykon) at Woodshed Studio, and displaying a sinister cover and illustration by Artem Grigoryev (with sigil and additional illustration by Next Gate Art, and additional illustration by Raul CJ Peña), Hearts Unchained – At War with a Passionless World is essentially a Black Metal album in the crackling dry and humorless German style that renounces all bombast and often folk-ish undertones of its Nordic counterparts, with Kerem Yilmaz creating new layers and expanding the dimensions of his unique compositions, supported by session drummer Melvin Cieslar (of Hexer).

Absolutely atmospheric and sinister, Intro – Deeper Within will drag your soul to the Stygian lair of Imha Tarikat before all hell breaks loose in Radical Righteousness, a song that deals with the detachment from addiction to emotional suffering, with Kerem screaming in anger nonstop accompanied by his own scorching riffs and the demented but very intricate drumming by Melvin. Touch Of Mercy starts in a serene, melodic manner to the beautiful guitar lines by Kerem, blending elements from the most primeval form of Black Metal with Progressive and Experimental Metal, whereas Brute Majesty is another song that exhales chaos, insanity and fury, with Melvin sounding bestial on drums while Kerem’s vocals get more and more rabid as the music evolves. And Flood Of Love (The Beast Trigger) will grab you by your throat and choke the life out of your body, sounding massive, sharp and caustic from start to finish, with Kerem stealing the show with his wicked riffs and vile roars.

The phantasmagorical (and a bit lengthy) Interlude – Birth Of Grandeur breaks the album in two, setting the tone for the second half starting with Dominator Proselytism Tactics, offering our ears a very dynamic, straightforward Black Metal sonority led by Melvin’s wicked beats. Put differently, it’s a truly infernal creation by Imha Tarikat, which can also be said about Streams Of Power – Canavar, presenting an incendiary Punk Rock/Hardcore vibe the likes of Misfits. It’s the less Black Metal of all songs, yet still acid and thrilling, not to mention the rumbling bass by Kerem is a thing of beauty; while Stardust Wisdom (Manifest Of The Deity To The Unkeen) is another strident, heavy-as-hell tune where Kerem’s anguished vocals walk hand in hand with the pounding drums by Melvin. And last but not least, it’s time for another obscure extravaganza entitled Beast Of Sovereignty, showcasing Kerem’s trademark vocals and riffs always supported by Melvin and his demented drums.

Kerem Yilmaz and his alter-ego Imha Tarikat are waiting for you on Facebook and on Instagram for news, tour dates, plans for the future and so on, and if you want to show your full support to such talented musician from Germany you can purchase Hearts Unchained – At War with a Passionless by clicking HERE and by streaming the album in its entirety on YouTube and on Spotify. In summary, Hearts Unchained – At War with a Passionless World is not an album for anyone, while at the same time it is for everyone, showing how dynamic and multi-layered the music crafted by Imha Tarikat is, turning Kerem’s anger and hatred into amazing music that will keep the fires of Black Metal burning for centuries to come.

Best moments of the album: Flood Of Love (The Beast Trigger), Dominator Proselytism Tactics and Streams Of Power – Canavar.

Worst moments of the album: Interlude – Birth Of Grandeur.

Released in 2022 Lupus Lounge/Prophecy Productions

Track listing
1. Intro – Deeper Within 1:27
2. Radical Righteousness 5:57
3. Touch Of Mercy 5:04
4. Brute Majesty 5:19
5. Flood Of Love (The Beast Trigger) 5:32
6. Interlude – Birth Of Grandeur 2:31
7. Dominator Proselytism Tactics 5:51
8. Streams Of Power – Canavar 4:50
9. Stardust Wisdom (Manifest Of The Deity To The Unkeen) 6:44
10. Beast Of Sovereignty 5:48

Band members
Kerem Yilmaz – vocals, guitars, bass

Guest musician
Melvin Cieslar – drums (session)

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