Antre / Black Metal with an atmosphere that is claustrophobic, savage and intense

From The Abyss: 12 January 2021

Nottingham’s Atmospheric Black Metal outfit Antre return, intent on building on the successes of their 2019 full length ‘Void’, with their follow up EP ‘Dark Spectrum’.

Antre – Dark Spectrum EP (Withered Hand Records)

Release Date: 15 January 2021

Words: Jools Green

‘Antre’ is an old English word for a cave or cavern, fitting for a band whose sound manifests as beautifully overpowering and intense. They tell us that this is “a representation of the innermost darkest places within all of us.”

Their Black Metal sound is bolstered by elements of Death, Thrash and Hardcore, creating an atmosphere that is claustrophobic, savage and intense and Antre aimed to write a more personal document of themselves with this EP.

Given that “the world is a grim and unrelenting place currently”, they wanted to pay recognition to that state. As a band they are “born from and exist in the situations we all retreat to in moments of despair. Channelling their inner emotions, the four tracks on offer respectively personalise Fear, Wrath, Salvation and Sanity.” The result makes an impressive listen.

Cover of Dark Spectrum from Antre

‘Dark Spectrum’ may only be a four track EP, but it clocks up a chunky twenty nine minutes duration. A hefty offering that opens on ‘Through These Dead Eyes’, where the haunting ominous opening build escalates to a driving and intensely blackened, all engulfing sound. Driving waves of riffs assault your senses and acerbic vocals sear into your very being.

Next on ‘Become the Damned’, intense soaring waves of hypnotic riffing are balanced against superb dual vocalisation. A sharp direction switch leads to a superb soaring first half lead work swathe, before taking on an all-engulfing dark brutality to the sound. This is probably my favourite track of the EP.

On ‘Mask of the Saviour’ I love the second half mournful leadwork. It serves as a stunning contrast to the brutal and intense vitriol of the rest of the track, dropping away to noise and a haunting piano close.

The final piece, ‘Cursed Existence’, has a dark thrashy drive to open, contrasted by a darkly reflective progressive drop away, building back up with acerbic tortuous vocals. A track with an ebb and flow that ranges from the hauntingly atmospheric to the dark and brutal.

‘Dark Spectrum’ should appeal to fans of Wiegedood, Winterfylleth and Wolves in the Throne Room and is out on Withered Hand Records on the 15 January.

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