The Ones from Hell (Season of Mist)

There’s so much going on in that band name, isn’t there? The words “necro” and “wretch” together — it’s almost too much morbidity for any one death metal band to cope with. Add the fact that their debut album was called Putrid Death Sorcery (roll that one around your head for a few minutes) and the Satan-meets-Chinese-dragon on the cover of this new opus, and we’re off to a blinding start.

Necrowretch are French, having formed in Valence in 2008. That’s important, except that France isn’t necessarily known for producing masses of black metal bands (black masses?); you can normally rely on Scandinavia and Eastern Europe for that. But still, the blend of death and black metal that these guys — frontman Vlad, guitarist K.Desecrator and drummer Elmer Marti Uibo — produce is gloriously, breathlessly putrid.

“The time has come to unleash our new creature to the face of the earth,” the band sad in a statement. “Behold to The Ones From Hell! Come thee, Come forth, embrace the Beast and  join us… in Pure Hellfire!”

C’mon now! As invitations go, that’s irresistible. And the album, their fourth full-lengther, features eight tracks that remain devastatingly brutal throughout, though their are dynamics on display. While they can blast out a speedy tune when they want to, a song like “Codex Obscuritas” proves that they are just as intense when they dial back a touch.

Their devotion to the horned one remains on point though. Song titles include “Pure Hellfire,” “Luciferian Sovranty” and “Darkness Supreme.” Black metal fans wouldn’t want it any other way, and the album is a treat.

(Season of Mist)

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