Turkish Black Metal misanthropes Zifir return with their fourth studio album ‘Demoniac Ethics’ a worthy follow up to 2017’s ‘Kingdom of Nothingness’ and are, as always, staying true to the concept of the band’s Black Metal vision, the difference between this release and the predecessor is that Zifir return once more as a trio, as Onur Önok and Nursuz are joined on bass by Ilgar.
Words: Jools Green
‘Demoniac Ethics’ continues as always, as the title suggests, with lyrical themes of anti-religion, nihilism and philosophy, bathed in and relying heavily on dark brooding and evil atmospherics, as a result predominantly the pace throughout is a steady mid-tempo plodding but suspenseful one, completed with maniacal vitriolic rasping vocals and haunting backing choral work.
Building the mysticism begins with ‘Sûr’ a haunting and ritualistic intro then a brief silence before the arrival of ‘Chants for Execution’ where intense hypnotic riffing creates the opening build, the result is hugely atmospheric, further in there is a good balance between the intense riffing and plodding pace, simple yet effective.
One of my favourites of this release and there are several, is ‘Still Reigning’, a dramatic atmospheric track where powerful chanting style vocals dominate with complementary vitriolic rasps and jangling guitar work breaking through.
‘Empire of Worms’ has a more elevated tempo to start but drops into that dark mid pace plod of its predecessors.
Another favourite, ‘Gökyüzü Karanlık’ has a slight sonic edge alongside spoken word, a haunting background choral gives a very esoteric mood to the track.
‘An Eerie Moment’ is very much as the title suggests, eerie and slightly industrialised in a very dark atmospheric manner and what sounds like a xylophone to open and close on this quirky interlude.
On ‘Chaos Clouds’ simple yet effective guitarwork dominates with an intense underlying riff tying the track together, the drum work building beneath the track dramatically towards the close.
‘Spirit of Goats’ has a bass dominated opener and an underlying sonic element building into intense riffing, also a little faster in tempo than most of its predecessors.
On ‘A Bleak Portrait’ chants and bestial vocals run alongside the vitriolic vocals, all bound together with dense black riffs and a more dominant drum delivery.
My final and absolute favourite, all though I do love the whole of this album, ‘Ephemeral Idols’ is another that is more up tempo compared to the main body of the album, driving riffs and underlying pounding drum work throughout adding a lot of density and richness to the track, complemented by the vitriolic rasp, interspersed open bass and drum dominated segments, steeped in classic Norwegian Black Metal styling, leading into ‘Insects as Messengers’ a bleak dark and intense closer.
As the band explain “Zifir is a confession, about who we are and who you are” so discover yourself and discover ‘Demoniac Ethics’, it’ll be time well spent. ‘Demoniac Ethics’ is out now via Duplicate Records as an LP version. The digital version and cassette are available through Zifir’s bandcamp page.