Mephorash      

Chalice of Thagirion
Grom Records
2012

Swedish orthodox black metal with a pompous slant resounds from your speakers on the sophomore effort from Mephorash.  Bombastic riffs with ceremonial accents from chimes gets the ritual underway as the title-track ushers in the album.  The pulse quickens like the pace while the vocals vary their approach from a deep rumble to a scratchy screech.  Hints from Marduk can be heard in some of the faster parts but there is stronger pull from bands like Secrets Of The Moon and Watain lurking in the folds of each composition.  Sounds of an ominous storm and gregorian chant cast a pall across Corpus Christi until a melodic guitar line and double bass drums burst into an explosion of cold riffs and demonic vocals.  I am not a huge fan of the gang vocals of "Hail" as they sound a little too mainstream for this style.  But that section is quickly swept aside by a lightning assault of hyper riffs.  An engaging set of bouncy riffs gravitates towards forlorn darkness on From Orcus To Erebos.  A whirlwind of bestial riffs and drums blasts during the initial segment of Membrorum Defecerit.  The track then slows to a moody groove with atmospheric intentions that for me aren't quite fully realized.  However the mood is decimated by intense riffs and a feverish pace.  A marching riff/beat dominates the passage about the seven deadly sins before becoming a little more muscular as the song heads towards it final breaths.  Sinister Swedish death metal tones dominate the opening of Radiance From The Sacred Shrine before an unbelievable burst of black metal hatred and necro totalitarianism.  A sampling of scared verbal tremblings breaks like a wave upon rolling drums and mesmerizing riffs on Servant before it truly elevates itself into a speedy desecration of White-light ideals and lingering, forlorn moods.  My one complaint is that the album is perhaps a little too long for its own good, clocking in at 56 minutes, it feel longer than it actually is.  With Chalice of Thagirion, Mephorash blend orthodox black metal imperialism with some more driving Swedish black metal and even shades of death metal which lines the fringes of their anti-xtian sermons.