House Of Atreus - Official Website

Demo I

United States Country of Origin: United States

1. Cordelia
2. Throne Of Chariots
3. Bracelets And Collars
4. The River Black
5. Salome's Passion Is A Severed Head

Review by Chris Pratl on January 8, 2024.

Just when one might be inclined to believe the underground has no creative or resounding wallop left in the right hook Minnesota’s House of Atreus dents the door just before kicking it down and dousing it with kerosene with this initial demo. This half-hour jaunt through death metal design is one of the year’s better offerings I’ve encountered, along with Deus Otiosus’ full-length debut. What HoA encompasses is a definitive and concise foray into the bowels of death metal, yet somehow there is little muck and mess upon diving within. That is to say there is no overt DM ‘filth’ and ‘grit’ per se but rather a unique ‘polish’ that doesn’t denigrate the music or the feel and sets the mark ever higher for other bands to achieve a similar and viable sound.

House of Atreus doesn’t carve a niche as much as it reshapes and shaves a tired and weary genre with such phenomenal tracks like “Throne of Chariots”, which could well be Sweden’s early 90’s effort without the particular attentiveness to the ugly side of the movement. The vocals are a raspy, even throaty bellowing that are clear and precise, while the music underneath simply finds every longing crevice in your cold heart and plants seeds of discomfort and fascination accordingly. With memorable riffs that stick like epoxy to the brain and a voice that growls its resentment in no less than two tones, I’m actually excited about a new band on the horizon.

And homegrown too, people!

The lush atmosphere surrounding the guitar tone with a slight hint of fuzz destroys any notions of run-of-the-mill rehashes in these five amazing tracks. What the totality of the death metal movement lacks in the face of lethargic, uninspired muck is expertly hones here to a degree of careful arrangement and detail. To provide the true disciple with an alternative blueprint for the future of a medium that wrestles daily with the commercialism looming over heavy metal rest solely in hands like these. I’m telling you right now; watch this band because this is only the beginning for them. The tape is numbered to 250 copies, so grab one yesterday.

Rating: 9 out of 10

(Originally written for