Welcome to the emaciated, corroded, rancid and consumed sonic hell of AKATHARSIA, a new but extremely obscure raw black metal/decaying punk band from the Bay Area, made up of former members of Lycus and current members of Negative Standards and Fell Voices. The demo kicks off with the eerie and shimmering first notes of Hive Mind, only to then take a one-way gruesome wrong turn and morph into a vomit of putrid raw black metal malevolence within seconds, a metamorphosis from which there will be no return. From then on, the band tears through eight disgusting and putrid blasts of lurid, crust-ridden raw black metal, dragging all sanity and grace with them into a bottomless pit of smoldering and putrescent dismay.
An extremely raw production, the absence of a bass, and extremely short, dissonant and stripped-down songs are the key elements to a release that sounds like pure fucking starvation and ruin, and in which you can literally feel the lack of life and human warmth. You can hear the rawness and desperation of No Sanctuary-era Amebix collide with the dismal and hypnotic bleakness of early Burzum, paving the way for a masterful splicing of crust punk rudeness and a hateful surge of vile early Scandinavian black metal.
The shortness and simplicity of the songs aligned with the breath-taking craft of the riffs keeps the Demo at a constant and consistent level of greatness, and the band just rip from one song into another with great ease and class, never losing focus or winding up in redundancy or repetitiveness, but rather aiming straight for pure filth and rawness, and getting their point across in a mere matter of minutes before launching into the next blast of corroded negativity on the list. It’s a short listen, and the style purveyed is some of the most simple, stripped-down and degenerate punk/metal you could think of, but there is loads of character, melody and personality in this music, and at times the almost obsessive and rabid rawness of the riffs and the vocals just sends shivers down your spine – shit gets so intense, real and heartfelt. We’re really excited about this band, and can’t fucking wait to see what they pull off next. If you like bands like Alkerdeel, Iskra, Gallhammer, Xasthur and such, then this shit is definitely for you.