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Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Review: Vrademargk – Arrelats

Label: Independent

Date: April 9th, 2021

From Terrassa, Catalonia, comes Vragdemargk, a melodic death metal band formed in 1999 as Tsunami. Although I am not quite sure what Vrademargk means (and no, I am not lazy to search, just hope I will get the opportunity to interview the band), I think Vrademargk is a better solution. So, Tsunami in 2003 changed the name and till 2021 they released one demo and two full lengths. The third one “Arrelats” was released earlier in April. Also, the band recorded a demo titled “Demo 2005” but never released it.

Their new album “Arrelats” contains seven songs.

There’s been eight years since their last release, and in those eight years a lot happened. Just if you thought there could not be any news from them after such a long time, they are back! Vrademargk strikes again!

New album-new line-up. Quintet became a quartet (one instead of two guitarists). Former bassist Germán is back. So, the new line-up that stands behind the third album is:  Jordi Urbano on voice, Rafael Ruíz on guitar, Germán Padierna on bass and Manel Rodríguez on drums. In the past, the band already wrote lyrics in Catalan, but this album delivers seven songs completely written in their language.

“The reason is purely artistic. When we decided to go ahead with Vrademargk, it was clear to us that we were going to get the best to ourselves, both personally and as a band. In this way, our singer Jordi, as the author of the lyrics, raised the possibility to express himself in his mother tongue, Catalan, to try to gain depth in the lyrics.”

And the truth is, Catalan lyrics does not obstruct you, even if you do not understand the language, good articulation gives the impression that you can with the activation of brain cells and minimal knowledge of Latin language understand the lyrics and everything fits so naturally.

As I mentioned, “Arrelats” delivers seven old school death metal songs:

1.Lividesa
2. Arrelats
3. Estigmes sobre Cendres
4. L’ Alè dels Indòmits
5.
L ‘Art de Morir
 6. Egocidi
7. Eudaimonia

Intro “Lividesa” slowly leads to the tile song “Arrelats” which obeys with a lot of melodic and catchy riffs. “Estigmes sobre Cendres” delivers very well, infectious and memorable guitar riff. “L’ Alè dels Indòmits” continues to roll in the same direction. “Egocidi” (featuring Eloi Boucherie) will speed up the pace a bit and lead to maybe the most versatile song is “Eudaimonia”, the last and the strongest one on the album.

Overall album atmosphere is dark. From the song titles you can conclude the depressive atmosphere overtakes the album. I will dare to say there are thousands of similar bands worldwide, but singing in Catalan might be the factor to stand out for the better position. The quality of the album is generally uniformed.  Personally, the best quality of the album are the Catalan lyrics and Rotting Christ moments that might be heard intertwined in the songs.

Obviously, the influences differ, but I would say the sound on “Arrelats” goes in the direction of Scandinavian death metal bands.

Personal favorite: “Art de Morir” (The Art Of Dying).

To mention the art cover at the end: a tree with a human figure standing in front of it with the roots in the foreground. Very effective if we consider that the translation of world arrelats might be roots.