DISMA - The Vault of Membros (DETEST Records - LP 2013)
If you have checked some of my previous reviews then you may remember my quite enthusiastic reaction to Disma’s debut full length album “Towards the Megalith” (which I’m still waiting to get released on vinyl). It truly was a massacring and awesomely brutal, massive death metal and for sure it also turned out to be one of my favourite albums released in years. Its main strength lied within the ability to create a dark and eerie atmosphere, to deliver crushing, massive riffs, which really were able to dismember… and you know, to put it simply, Disma just composed several absolutely spotless old school death metal songs, with killer riffage, great vocals and not to mention flawless production… It seemed like Disma perfected everything and this is why I consider “Towards the Megalith” as one of the greatest death metal records of the decade or more. But while I was enjoying “Towards the Megalith” I also realized that so far I haven’t had a chance to hear any other releases from Disma – and they also released a demo and two 7”EPs (one of which is a spit release with Winterwolf – band, which features an Antti Boman, ex Demilich vocalist!). I lost my chance to get any of them, but I was quite happy when I have found out that Detest Records will do “The Vault of Membros” vinyl version. Sad news was that it is the final release of this excellent label – something I couldn’t believe that they decided to end their activity so soon… but well, that’s another story. As a fan I am happy that I managed to pick up several releases from Detest and among them there’s “The Vault of Membros” on vinyl. They’ve released it on nice gatefold cover and the record itself comes on red colour, but none of that is really so important (especially as the artwork on this demo is not as damn effective as the cover, which you can see on “Towards the Megalith”) – only one thing matters and that is the music.
Music on “The Vault of Membros” is just fuckin awesome. I guess it shouldn’t really be a surprise, as all three songs from this demo have been re-recorded for the album. And they are: “Lost in the Burial Fog”, “The Vault of Membros” and “Chaos Apparition”. Expect only the best US styled obscure death metal, mixed with everything what the European scene has to offer (a lot of Finnish, Swedish and British influence can be spotted everywhere); slow and massive, morbid, heavy and brutal… and it will feel like something ultra heavy is smashing your face and squeezing your limbs like in the vice, splashing the blood everywhere and bringing unimaginable pain. Ha, what a wonderful feeling! Take “Lost in the Burial Fog”, for instance, what a damn killer song that is. What I like is that it is not just a plain and simple Incantation worship, but there’s something more to it, as I mentioned you’ll find there also some Swedish or Finnish influences, from the likes of Grave, Adramelech or Demigod… and it is such an awesome listen. I love the deep, maniacal vocals of Craig Pillard, as well as the sound – even if is not as 100% perfect as on the album – plus that crushing, powerful riffage is so awesome, with those slow parts or harmonies… the whole stuff sounds like a classic death metal record. I just cannot resist those sounds and keep playing that record over and over again!
“The Vault of Membros” vinyl version contains an extra track, just in case you don’t know. It is a live version of “The Manifestation”, which is a song from the 7”EP. Well, it sounds so well that it is almost hard to believe it is a live recording, especially as there’re no screams of people or any other signs of living beings present during the recording of the song… This is why it sounds weird a bit. But the song is really good and I think it is a good addition to the whole demo. But even without it I would have to strongly recommend you getting this piece of vinyl (or if you’re lucky you may get the original demo cassette somewhere?) – the music of Disma is just powerful and absolutely 666% killer and for me this is one of the best death metal bands of the decade. Now, if I can only ask someone to finally release their full length album on vinyl… I’ve heard that Doomentia will take care of it and will include a bonus 7”EP with two new songs to the album. I fuckin cannot wait to get it!!!!!!!!!
Standout track: “Lost in the Burial Fog”
Final rate: 95/100