I like the punk sound and sentiments of “Spit In The Eye,” the opening track from down-tempo, D-beating Tasmanian black metal duo Thrall’s debut Away From The Haunts Of Men. Ditto Tom Void’s throat-shredding yowls about perfect annihilation, his disgust for humanity, etc. It gives the music a muscular, less airy or eerie BM feel. Across the album, Thrall (Void with Em Støy on drums/vocalist assists) carry a noir vibe — Earth’s dark Western atmospherics colliding with blackened Aussie thrash crew Atomizer or to stick with that continent, Darkthrone meets the Birthday Party. It’s untypical. And not what you’d expect if the only other Tasmanian black metal you know is Striborg. There are coyote howls (“Frozen Tears And Blood”), that crust swing (“Enormous Night,” “Black Hearts Burn!”), an acoustic Loren Connors/Roy Montgomery lullaby (“To Velvet Blackness”), thunderstorms (“Torrent Of Death”), the doomy Earth excavations (“Rank Webs”), the epic closer that ties all the ingredients together (“Robe Of Flesh”), and sludgy, slow-release dynamics throughout, along with plenty of excellent riffs. Take a listen to the aforementioned opener:
Thrall – “Spit In The Eye”
Here’s a video for “Torrent Of Death,” which gives a sense of the band’s thrashing “groove.”
Homosapiens are a plague mindlessly consuming the last of the Earth’s resources; mass extinction/ecological cataclysm is upon us. Thrall’s music howls a pro-void mantra advocating the post-human era. Thrall is an embodiment of the contradiction of being inherently human yet anti-human.