SLAVIA - Strength & Vision LP
"Marvelous. So rarely do I get stuff out of the blue that is any good, and here is something totally unexpected and it just rules. This is a debut for Slavia, which I think is just one guy, and it might just be the best Black Metal album this year. This album opens with a pretty good keyboard intro piece, and then your ears get pummeled by some of the most chaotic unholy blasting I have ever heard. But far from being standard clickety-click this album is a fat, analog recorded fist right up the ass of all poser Black Metal everywhere. Slavia seem to have successfully melded the rawness and aggression of early Mayhem with the thick, heavy attack of Hellhammer to make a sound so simple and obvious it's practically a revelation. Chunky, bludgeoning riffs thrash and grind along, even opening out into majestic march-to-battle riffs that remind me of Graveland or Iuvenes. The vocals are a glass-gargling assault of blasphemy and hatred.
And what lifts this completely above the ordinary is the complete fearlessness of the songwriting, closing out "The Blasphemic Art" with an a cappella rendition of a traditional marching song, or elsewhere segueing into Chopin's "Funeral March" or even a brief swirl of middle-eastern music - it seems nonsensical, but every choice makes complete sense in the place where it arises. It's the hallmark of mastery is what it is, of a composer who knows what he's doing and doesn't care what anyone else thinks. But this is not some kind of weird experimental album - far from it - this is some of the dirtiest, ugliest, Hell-blasting Black Metal you will ever hear. Absolutely killer." (the metal crypt)
Grey/ Black splatter LP with spot UV laquering on outer cover + includes A3 poster! Limited to 500 - Drakkar Prod. 2008