Monday, May 2, 2011
Ritual - The Resurrection Review (By Michael Gene Menchue)
Funeral Rain Records
I can only admit to being vaguely familiar with California “Criminal Black Metal” act Ritual, who’re not to be confused with the 666 other bands on Earth using/abusing the same moniker. Having kicked it in the USBM underground since the early days, breaking up and now reforming, they now present us with The Resurrection for our listening pleasure. And the music? To be honest, the criminal black metal thing had me hoping
that I was in store for some Sextrash/Sarcafago/Vulcano style fistfucking, but what I actually got was the exact opposite. This is in fact some pretty clean, decently produced
mid 90’s sounding Euro metal, with nods to Bathory’s Viking phase (A Perfect Moonlit
Night), as well as a little Bethlehem and 6 tons of other discernible influences from across the map. In fact, some of these riffs sound extremely familiar to these ears. What will you find an abundance of is, most notably, is a super clean guitar sound, especially when dishing out all those simple but effective melodies found all over the place here. The problem is, the formula is fairly standard, the tempo varies a bit but not too much, and it all sounds pretty similar to something you’ve already heard before. I will go out on a limb here and say that some of this shit is pretty catchy (Blinded By Hatred), and with some fine tuning in the songwriting department I could definitely see these guys rocking an early afternoon slot at Wacken. Not highly recommended, but there’s far worse out there.