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Shadows Devouring Light

Brazil Country of Origin: Brazil

1. Forsaken By The Father (Intro)
2. Silence
3. The Serpent's Earthly Throne
4. Shadows Devouring Light
5. Primordial Impurity
6. Mother Of Abominations
7. Wings Of Perdition
8. Eve's Holy Vulva
9. Adversary Of Creation
10. Summoning The Abjection

Review by Felix on December 20, 2022.

Power From Hell is a band I really like – more than my previous ratings indicate. The Blood n’ Spikes EP (minus the lame Priest cover) was already very good, but in particular Profound Evil Presence has withstood the test of time with great ease. I thought that this was their breakthrough. Very forceful songwriting met a professional production – and the latter was anything but a matter of course considering their early works. So I expected a lot from Shadows Devouring Light.

But what the hell do I have to realize? The production is a relapse into those weird times I thought to have disappeared. No, they do not offer another amateurish, sick sound experience like they dished up on Sadismo or Spellbondage. Nevertheless, their new material sounds simply strange. All instruments and the voice seem to come through a wall of fog. Or were there too many banned substances involved here? Either way, I diagnose a lack of directness and power. Especially the milky guitar sound gives me a hard time, but the robotic drums also leave room for improvement. I believe one can get used to this unfamiliar mix, but it definitely does not make it easy to enjoy the album right from the start. Sometimes the full-length sounds like Pestilence’s “Spheres” if it had been produced with a heavy basic tone. Indeed, Shadows Devouring Light conveys the undertone of an unknown dimension and this does not really match with the down-to-earth compositional approach.

Music-wise, I can herald better news. Mastermind Sodomic, the man with the monotonous yet adequate vocals, has written solid pieces, for example 'Silence', the first full track after the intro. 'The Serpent’s Earthy Throne' works as well, although its uninspired ending, a simple fade-out, is somewhat disappointing. However, these songs set the basic tone for an album that wants to score with its unreal and creepy atmosphere. Nice idea, but unfortunately this approach is at the expense of primitive power – and precisely this feature has always been an appreciated trademark of the band. The title track mirrors the entire ambivalence of the album: it starts with drug-imbued harmony fragments that go astray, but it also houses a good, pretty brutal part (only as brutal as production allows, of course).

Every now and then, the guitar lines evoke associations with Colombia’s Inquisition. That’s okay, there are many worse role models in the scene. Yet it is also true that the songs fail to create a strong, long-lasting aroma. Outstanding riffs or catchy elements are not absent, but rare. To mention just one example, the chorus of 'Demons Of The Night' engraved itself into my long-term memory immediately. Shadows Devouring Light does not shine with choruses that crown the songs and so it fails to deliver an equal experience. It is pretty effective during its playtime, but subsequently it vanishes into thin air and leaves not much more than a blurred overall impression of strange colours which flow into each other.

I don’t want to hide the fact that the album has grown on me. At first, I was pretty disappointed, but now I see the full-length as a kind of experiment and maybe I have to acknowledge the courage of the Brazilians. Last but not least, late attacks like the pretty straight, delicately titled 'Eve’s Holy Vulva' or 'Adversary Of Creation' with its sharp riffing increase the quality of the entire release. Nevertheless, Shadows Devouring Light is a step back and I miss the well-defined sound of Profound Evil Presence and the clear contours of its songs. (By the way, my rating for this album was too low, I beg your indulgence.) So what is left to say? I could talk about the lyrics, where filthy wombs and cursed breasts appear, but once again I beg your indulgence, I am too old for this highly sensitive kind of poetry. And maybe it is better to ignore the details of the lyrics, because I still want to like this horde called Power From Hell and I am already curious about their next output, regardless of the deficits of this one.

Rating: 7 out of 10