Abaddon magazine

Music magazine

Monday, October 18, 2021

Review: Mask Of Satan – Underneath the Mire

Label: Iron, Blood and Death Corporation

Date: July 15th, 2021

Most real underground maniacs have a specific sound in their minds when you mention Finnish death metal. The scene that forever remained undeservedly overlooked by the majority of the metal population. Unlike the more globally recognized power, doom or black metal ones. Still, one must acknowledge that specific weight of sound behind bands spawned between “the thousand lakes”. And that atmosphere that encompasses Demilich, Abhorrence or Demigod, to mention just the best known names.

Still, Florida remained at the forefront, Germany to follow closely behind with the Netherlands, England and South America. All the while Finns are dwelling deeply rooted in the underground. A rare dish for the connoisseurs.

Mask Of Satan, on the other hand, is a Finnish band that breaks the pattern. Although one must note that they carry with them a dose of unmistakable depth of their native scene, their inspiration apparently comes from elsewhere. US of A, most obviously. With Six Feet Under, Obituary or mid-career Morbid Angel.

Now, that sounds like a fine combination that could turn a few heads their way. The songs that make for the second full album by the trio are just slightly aimed at the atmospheric elements of music. Most of them offer a relentless surge of brutal aggression. They are quite straight forward, meaning there is no unnecessary contemplation or complication. The band has a target in sight and goes for an easy and fast shot at the very center.

A collage of diverse rhythms and a riffing barrage still make for an interesting listen. Accompanied with lead guitar pieces and deep, guttural vocal, Mask Of Satan completes the “ABC’s” of death metal. As far as I’m concerned, nothing further is needed.

Naturally, the band did not create an instant and timeless classic. However, they did create a record that no real death metal aficionado will call boring, blunt or unimaginative. Quite the contrary. “Underneath the Mire” is an honest death metal album that will appeal to every death metal freak out there. Wherever your heart lays, this or that side of the Atlantic Ocean. There is a piece, no matter how big or small, of every style neatly incorporated into the “mire”.

Finished off with a poster-appropriate cover artwork.

Your death metal collection will most certainly not be incomplete without “Underneath the Mire”, but the album might become a fine addition to it.