Label: Goatshrine Productions
Date: December 23rd, 2022
It’s intriguing, to say the least, how we’re still getting fresh Angelgoat releases with material written a whole decade ago. To make it clear, these tracks haven’t been published before, but the liner notes clearly indicate that they were written in 2010 / 2011. And it’s not just the case with “The Blackmoon Witchery”, but the previous publications of this old Serbian one-man band, too. If Unholy Carnager, the guy behind Angelgoat, is still writing, it is likely he already has enough material to keep him busy for the decade to come. Should he stop writing now, which I highly doubt.
Anyway, with tracks finely aged as the six on display here, we must be dealing with a black metal masterclass. I haven’t declared it, but from the band’s name and the EP’s title, you have concluded we’re dealing with black metal, right? As for the aging, this type of black metal needs none of it, since it is “timeless music”, as the legendary zine editor Mr. Adam “Skalpel” Stasiak says. Basically, it is black metal of the old Scandinavian style. Though, admittedly, with every new release Angelgoat seems to take on more of those primeval brutal black / death metal influences. Canadian bands such as Blasphemy or Revenge. Or Pseudogod if we’re talking about the geographically closer regions. As for the Europe’s north divisions, early works of Marduk or Darkthrone are the keynotes. With early Bathory to tie it all up nicely.
So, basically, this is old school in the truest of meanings. Cold, fierce, aggressive and with utmost disregard towards organized religion. In other words, blasphemous to the core.
Now, this is a tape release and I will go about splitting this, already short, release in half. Though “side B” of the actual tape is blank (which is weird since it has a sticker on it and I would at least expect a same-sided tape) let me put the last three tracks onto it for now.
“Side A”, not counting the introduction, would contain two utterly primitive tracks. What’s more, “Rise of the Horned Depravity” and “Obliteration of the Holy Cross” seem to revolve around a very similar arrangement. There’s a pattern by which Angelgoat strives towards total sonic deconstruction. Literally, the band looks to ridicule any musical progress and keep things simple and as effective as possible.
Be that as it may, the two opening songs do not offer much to dwell upon, as they are both simple cuts than run across the throat of believers. Fans of above mentioned bands will be happy, if not ecstatic, about them.
However, the final three tracks (there’s no outro on the EP), offer a bit more creative versatility. No, don’t be afraid, Angelgoat is still this gnarly, relentless black (death) metal beast. But there seems to be a bit more to these songs than their predecessors. Hence, my thought of placing them on “side B”. Makes me think that they were among those crafted in the later stages, with their author having a clearer image of “an individual seal” upon his work.
With that, there comes a higher artistic expression, though still deep within the raw black metal underworld. Rhythmically diversified, with riffing going further than primitive chord progressions and even a hint of a guitar solo in “Fall of the Damnation Hammer”, the second half of the EP is, value-wise, way above the first.
The closing one, bearing the same name as the whole EP, seems to return to the origins, but it could still fit with the two that precede it. In any case and as a whole, “The Blackmoon Witchery” is a treat for those that live and breathe the old school, the whole old school and nothing but old school. Musical extremism from a still exotic Serbia and with a neat limitation to just sixty six cassette tapes. A sign for those true of underground hearts and values to rush, before the E-bay vultures set the three-figured prices.