Album Review – Faustian Spirit / Blessed by the Wings of Eternity (2022)

A sinister horde from Chile arises from the pits of hell with their debut full-length opus, offering us all eight dismal and imperishable tracks of determined darkness and majestic, sinister Black Metal purity.

From the darkest depths of the subconscious, stained by the blood of the dragons from the other side, Valparaíso, Chile-based Black Metal entity Faustian Spirit was born to see the darkness in 2019 beyond the blackened sun of the anti-cosmic void. Comprised of Magister Nihilifer Vendetta 218 on vocals and bass, N. Psicopompos on the guitars (or on the “anticosmic vibrations” as the band itself likes to say), and Knoʯmenon on drums, Faustian Spirit arise from the underworld in 2022 with their first full-length opus, entitled Blessed by the Wings of Eternity, following up on the absolute darkness of their 2020 self-titled debut demo. Recorded and mixed at Dead Signal, in Chile, and displaying a sinister logo and Sol Intempesta sigil by Nox Fragor Art and a darkly stunning cover artwork and photo frame sigils by Beatriz Wolf Artworks, Blessed by the Wings of Eternity presents eight dismal and imperishable tracks of determined darkness and majestic, sinister Black Metal purity not recommended for the lighthearted.

The opening tune Nullification is brutal, raw and blasphemous form the very first second, with the obscure gnarls by Magister Nihilifer Vendetta 218 crawling deep inside your skin while the anticosmic vibrations blasted by N. Psicopompos are an ode to classic Black Metal. Then Knoʯmenon hammers his drums with endless hatred in his heart in Mysterivm Veritas Silentivm, something in the lines of “the mystery of the truth of silence”, another demolishing Black Metal onrush that will please all fans of the darkest side of music with Magister Nihilifer Vendetta 218 sounding once again inhumane on vocals for our total delight; and the acoustic and extremely sinister guitar lines by N. Psicopompos in the interlude The Faustian Archetype set the stage for Faustian Spirit to crush our damned souls in Sanguinem Drakonis (or “dragon’s blood”), where the trio keeps slamming their sonic weapons mercilessly in the name of pure evil. Furthermore, Magister Nihilifer Vendetta 218 is not only a talented vocalist, but his low-tuned, demonic bass lines also bring an extra touch of obscurity to the overall result.

If you think you’ll have a moment of peace you’re absolutely wrong, because infernal riffs, rumbling bass jabs and nonstop blast beast will decimate your senses in the fast and furious title-track Blessed by the Wings of Eternity, a solid display of Scandinavian Black Metal made in Chile for admirers of the genre; followed by Die Minnensänger, which translates as “the minstrels”, and that’s what you’ll get from Faustian Spirit with three minutes of acoustic guitars, somber passages and sheer melancholy, warming up our senses for the Stygian and grim Sol Intempesta, their most infernal and detailed creation exhaling old school Black Metal spearheaded by the demonic gnarls by Magister Nihilifer Vendetta 218, while N. Psicopompos continues to invade our minds with his undisputed anticosmic vibrations, flowing into the outro Gazers of Tehiru, which despite taking away a tiny bit of all the darkness and energy of the album, it ends up working fine for what it is.

You can enjoy all the blasphemy and obscurity blasted by Faustian Spirit in Blessed by the Wings of Eternity by streaming the album in its entirety on YouTube, but in order to show your utmost support to the most Stygian corners of the underground you should purchase a copy of the album from the band’s own BandCamp page, from the Inferna Profundus Records’ BandCamp page or webstore, as well as from several other retailers such as Sound Cave, Oratorivm, iMusic and Discogs. South American Black Metal never disappoints, and Faustian Spirit make sure the fires of Chilean metal keep burning bright with Blessed by the Wings of Eternity, inviting us all to destroy and transcend the material castle of our ego, conquer our will, and open ourselves to chaos.

Best moments of the album: Mysterivm Veritas Silentivm, Sanguinem Drakonis and Sol Intempesta.

Worst moments of the album: Gazers of Tehiru.

Released in 2022 Inferna Profundus Records

Track listing
1. Nullification 5:03
2. Mysterivm Veritas Silentivm 4:56
3. The Faustian Archetype 2:19
4. Sanguinem Drakonis 8:39
5. Blessed by the Wings of Eternity 3:34
6. Die Minnensänger 3:18
7. Sol Intempesta 6:52
8. Gazers of Tehiru 2:15

Band members
Magister Nihilifer Vendetta 218 – vocals, bass
N. Psicopompos – guitars
Knoʯmenon – drums

Album Review – Luctus / Užribis (2020)

Are you ready to dive into the cold waters of the Beyond together with one of the meanest Black Metal hordes of the Lithuanian scene?

Formed in the already distant year of 2001 in Kaunas, the second largest city in Lithuania located in the south-central region of the country, by vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Kommander L. as a one-man band, the incendiary Black Metal act that goes by the somber name of Luctus (a Latin words that means lamentation, mourning or grief) has evolved into one of the most important metal institutions of the Lithuanian scene through the years, becoming a mature and stable creature with a trademark sound that has already toured extensively across their homeland and all over Europe. Currently comprised of Kommander L. on vocals and bass, Šatras and Dovydas on the guitars, and Vytautas on drums, this talented “Nihil Black Metal” brigade is back in action after five long years with their long-awaited fourth album Užribis, or “The Beyond”, conceptually continuing the path taken by their 2015 album Ryšys while musically representing a further step in the search for the purity of sound and an emotional impact. Recorded at Lapės Records Studios in Lithuania, mixed and mastered at Necromorbus Studios in Sweden, and featuring a cryptic artwork by José Gabriel Alegría Sabogal (also known as Hathrul), Užribis is a spiritual journey through the obscure depths of the soul, breaking through any boundaries of social life in search of what the band calls the “Other World”. Having said that, are you ready to dive into the cold waters of the Beyond?

Just hit play and the ethereal and cryptic intro Gilyn (or “into the depth” in English) will embrace your damned soul and set the tone for the devastating and hellish Sušiurpintas Ano Pasaulio Nuostabos (“stunned by the awe-inspiring Other World”), with the entire band providing their welcome card through their infernal blast beats, scorching Black Metal riffs and vicious vociferations, not to mention the song’s disturbing, phantasmagorical vibe. And the slashing guitars by Šatras and Dovydas ignite the sulfurous Kas Tu Esi? (“who are you?”), a demonic display of old school Black Metal with Thrash and Death Metal nuances where Kommander L. rabidly barks the song’s lyrics (always in his mother tongue, by the way); then a disturbing beginning will darken the skies in the title-track Užribis (“the beyond”), before Vytautas begins hammering his drums furiously in a dense fusion of Black and Thrash Metal. Furthermore, Kommander L.’s vile roars get deeper and more demented as the music progresses, resulting in a lesson in Blackened Death Metal the likes of Behemoth and flowing like the fires of the underworld until its fulminating finale.

Už Sapno Ribų (“beyond the limits of the dream”) is another pulverizing blast of extreme sounds by Luctus led by the evil riffs and solos by both Šatras and Dovydas, once again living up to the legacy of crushing Blackened Death Metal, whereas the band’s rumbling bass lines and berserk beats dictate the rhythm in Tikėjimo Paslaptis (“the secret of faith”), filling our ears with sheer obscurity and blasphemy in the form of classic Black Metal, sounding and feeling truly reverberating and dense from start to finish. Then we have Liejasi (“merging”), an absolutely sinister tune showcasing cryptic passages, eerie background sounds and strident guitars, exploding into a demented feast of Black and Death Metal titled Vandens Paviršiumi (“skimming over the water”), one of the most detailed songs of the album, bringing to our ears multiple layers of darkness, hatred and fury piled up by the quartet, with Kommander L. taking the lead with his deep guttural roars and suddenly morphing into the cadaverous outro Fascinatio Mortis, as Stygian and grim as it can be, putting a cinematic ending to such detailed album.

The gates to the “Other World” ruled by Luctus are open thanks to the amazing job done by this sulfurous quartet in their new album Užribis, available for a full listen on YouTube and on Spotify. Hence, don’t forget to show your true support to those Lithuanian metallers by paying them a visit on Facebook and on Instagram, and especially by purchasing Užribis from their own BandCamp page or from the Inferna Profundus Records’ BandCamp page or webstore (in  CD or LP format), as well as from Apple Music or from Discogs. And then, but only then, after putting your hands on Užribis, you’ll be ready to cross the barriers of the Beyond together with one of the most prominent hordes from the Lithuanian scene.

Best moments of the album: Sušiurpintas Ano Pasaulio Nuostabos, Užribis and Vandens Paviršiumi.

Worst moments of the album: None.

Released in 2020 Inferna Profundus Records

Track listing
1. Gilyn 2:07
2. Sušiurpintas Ano Pasaulio Nuostabos 5:09
3. Kas Tu Esi? 7:06
4. Užribis 7:54
5. Už Sapno Ribų 7:40
6. Tikėjimo Paslaptis 6:45
7. Liejasi 2:39
8. Vandens Paviršiumi 7:11
9. Fascinatio Mortis 2:30

Band members
Kommander L. – vocals, bass
Šatras – guitars
Dovydas – guitars
Vytautas – drums