Richmond, Virginia, is no stranger to birthing numerous cracking metal bands over the years, from GWAR to Lamb of God to Municipal Waste among many others, and now we can add Occultist to the thriving metal city’s list of awesomeness. Make no mistake, this is a thoroughly monstrous record by a monstrous band, punctuated by numerous riffs of crusty shells, thrash underlayers, and black metal infused incantations. Key to this is vocalist Kerry, who at times is the proverbial daemoness, spewing hell forth and summoning apocalyptic thunder in her vocal delivery, underpinned by impressive guitar work, reckless solo worship and excellently timed shifts in tempo. The band can sail along a loud and malevolent groove comfortably before dropping the warning signal and unleashing a battering turn of speed, evidenced excellently on tracks like ‘Devil’s Breath’ and ‘A Hell for the Innocent’. There’s nothing I don’t love about this release. Yes, the title track is eerily similar to Slayer’s ‘Hell Awaits’ at the beginning, and the riff that carries ‘Path of the Damned’ has a distinct Motörhead/Saxon influence about it, but rather than mark them down for these traits, it’s better to celebrate how they harness them, creating an ultimately dark but violent, malevolent concoction. All these elements together, put simply, leaves you with a banger like ‘Death Sigils‘.
Buy/download ‘Death Sigils‘ here (name-your-price)
Stream it below: