Halloween is a joyous occasion for many around the world, myself included. It’s a time when horror and gore is shared proudly, little ones enjoy trick or treating, haunted houses, and an opportunity to consume the most horrific media that can be found. Whether this is through music or movies or both, it is either an excuse to get caught up or a purposeful binge. With that in mind we have two albums for your perusal that could just as easily soundtrack a sacrifice as it could a Halloween party. Exhibit A: Void Meditation Cult‘s throughly dark, black/death metal full length debut, Utter the Tongue of the Dead. Exhibit B: Terrortron‘s horror-synth second full length, Necrophiliac Among the Living Dead.
For a band that’s been around since 2009, Void Meditation Cult don’t have a lot of material to show for it. But what they lack in quantity they more than make up for in quality. 2011’s demo Sulfurous Prayers may have been short but it reeked of ritualistic black metal framed against death metal riffs. But the atmosphere was the standout, riding close to the likes of Profanatica and Von, this band spewed pure evil. On Utter the Tongue of the Dead the band sets the same tone but is more intense and deliberate with their satanic output. “The Antichrist Prevails” tests the limits of blast beats by slowing them down and pairing grossly down-tuned guitar chords that sound like the earth has cracked open a portal straight to hell and demons roam free to claim their souls. In comparison, “The Brimstone Hail” is a lightning rod of pulse quickening blasts, fret molesting guitar work, and demonic death growls. This album is 10 tracks of droning death metal, syrupy slow black metal, and — yet again — sickeningly dark atmosphere. If you’re out to scare the kiddies or need something to kick up the adrenaline at your haunted house, look no further than Utter the Tongue of the Dead.
North Carolina’s Terrortron seek out the best time for horror with their second full length of 80’s horror synth, Necrophiliac Among the Living Dead. A quick search of IMDB shows no movie of this name, but that plays to the mystique of band’s such as this. They take an idea and turn it into an ‘original soundtrack recording’ but make it all the more realistic with the way it’s written, tracked, and performed. The premise of this album gets behind the living dead theme. Corpses are coming back to life to claim human flesh and for the mortician heroine Jessica, who’s been hiding a very grim sexual secret, this uprising is an opportunity. A bit of a twist indeed, but it handily recalls the horrific classic Necromantix. The band does an insanely great job of telling the story through song titles and expertly structured passages. “City Lights Before the Fright” is an upbeat — and dare I say — happy sounding track that tells of a blissful town bustling with everyday life unaware of the terror that awaits. “Corpses Attack the Town” has a deliberately choppy structure that invokes visions of the risen dead eating the flesh of unsuspecting town folk and the carnage that follows in it’s wake. And of course the obligatory “Love Theme” that no doubt has Jessica in the throes of a candlelit session with one of these hideous undead. Terrortron have, very successfully, created an album that plays out as a movie. The buildup, the tension, the love scene, and the return to normalcy (or as much as possible) is all conveyed perfectly. For those of us who lived through the likes of John Carpenter and Fabio Frizzi, this album is a godsend and one not to be forgotten. This is artistic craft at it’s finest. So, kick your Halloween party off right with this or sit back with headphones and be taken back to a golden era of horror, either way you won’t regret spending the time spent with this engrossing second offering.