(Dark Decent Records)
'Towards Eschaton' is eight new offerings of face ripping, traditionally styled black n' thrash Metal from London based Craven Idol, the culmination of their vision over the last eight years and follow up to 2010s 'Ethereal Altars' EP.
In its creation they have aimed to reach beyond their blackened thrash roots by also incorporating elements of doom, traditional Heavy Metal and classic death Metal.
Featuring members of Scythian, Sepulchral Temple, Solstice and Deceptor, the theme of the album is, in the band's words: "Primarily based around the rotten fabric of religion and the depraved notions birthed upon its gilded altars."
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Musically you are engulfed by fast relentless riffs, the vocals from Vrath are powerful, blistering and caustic and the drum work from Polish drummer Volgard is intense and precise. In short it's a great album, an exciting listen and choosing a favourite among the eight tracks is a difficult task I will pass on.
Beginning with 'To Summon Mayrion' which has a dark, ominous, atmospheric opener with a pace that builds, ready for the arrival of the excellent caustic vocals with an atmospheric, reflective, drop away to the later part and a clean and simple, yet effective guitar element before ending on a thrash frenzy.
'Sworn Upon the Styx' is a very up tempo, exciting and in your face track with a lot packed into just two and a half minutes. The frenzied tempo continues for 'Golgotha Wound' and a few rather nice Thrash guitar elements towards the later part of the track.
The crazy riff work starts early on 'Craven Atonement', then there is a pause which fooled me, I thought we had moved on the next track but it turned out to be just a poignant moment before a tempo change to a darker more reflective segment, followed by the final manic race to the end of the track.
Initially 'Codex Of Seven Dooms' starts with a crazy paced opener but levels out a catchy repeat riff with a slightly slower, very blackened, overall tempo, more so than its predecessors and a classic plodding black Metal ender.
The tempo is back up again for 'Aura Of Undeath' with some insane paced guitar work midway. Its wonderfully up tempo for a track called 'Left To Die,' but the sinister element is found in the vocalisation and lyrics with tasty guitar segment towards the close.
The final track 'Orgies' is up tempo and fairly self explanatory in its name, with a rather impressive, tortuous scream midway as the pace reaches frenzied proportions, an excellent album ender.
The artwork for 'Towards Eschaton' with its rather fascinating scene of mayhem, death and destruction and is by Paolo Girardi. I do love bands and albums that try to encompass what they consider to be the best elements of the Metal genres; it's so much more interesting than a niche composition.
This is an excellent first full length release end to end and one I am going to enjoy listening to for quite some time, certainly at least, until they draw me away with their next release.