Theotoxin - Official Website - Interview
Fragment : Totenruhe
Review by Michael on October 20, 2022.
I stumbled over the new Theotoxin album because of the cover. It was created by José Gabriel Alegría Sabogal who did a very good job with the last Whoredom Rife cover and so he does here. Fragment: Totenruhe is the fourth full-length album of the Austrian quintet and my guess would be that it is a continuation of Fragment: Erhabenheit.
Starting with a quite innocent and friendly doom-riff this little beautiful creature turns out into a poisonous beast after some seconds. Harsh black metal riffs with quite a Swedish touch burn down everything (okay, that's a lame pun for 'World, Burn For Us') and the hateful high-pitched vocals that sound much like vocals on early Lord Belial albums do the rest to push the world down into the abyss. Although the songs are a pretty wildly hateful and the band doesn't know the term “slow” that well, the songs don't evolve into pure chaos but keep comprehensible structures and very appealing melodies. A very good example of it is the second track 'Catastrophe In Flesh' (I would like to know who the band has in mind with this title– a lot of people come to my mind). Again you have these Dissection-like riffs but also a lot of death metal influences and the deep-tuned vocals here and there make the track even more demonically tuned than when they would only use these high black metal screams. I said that the band doesn't know the word “slow” too well. Well, this is a little bit exaggerated because the first two minutes of 'Towards The Chasm' are pure creeping evil underlined with some sinister keyboard parts. This is what makes orthodox black metal that good. 'Demise Of A Gilded Age' and 'Perennial Lunacy' are much more melodic than the rest and have some really cool rocky and catchy parts that sometimes even drift into somewhat punkish vibes. Still you can hear Dissection and sometimes some Necrophobic lurking out of the inferno. But of course there isn't any fun aspect in these songs just a lot of hate and fury apeearing.
The eight self-composed tracks are for sure the best black metal stuff this year from Austria and also one of the black metal highlights in 2022 (at least in my humble opinion) but the goat headed topping of all this is the cover of Marduk's “Frontschwein”. It is quite close to the original but it is more than fine. The production is very balanced, saturated, powerful and makes the album a very good piece of extreme metal which will find its way into my stereo very often. By the way, the band will play some concerts with Archgoat and the aforementioned Whoredom Rife in November in Europe – this is definitely worth checking out!
Rating: 9.5 out of 10 Fragmente des Todes455