Mantar - Death By Burning | Review

Snapped by Svart Records greatly due to the strong reactions garnered by their 7” released last year, Mantar are a duo from Germany that plays a punishing, monolithically heavy doom that could easily soundtrack the coming of the apocalypse.

Bolstered by an uncompromising and raw production, Mantar’s debut album Death By Burning stocks a massive amount of crushing, raw and wicked riffs within its 45 minutes. It’s quite amazing how full and intense this stuff sounds with only two members in the group, these guys harness more power and vitriol than many full-fledged groups.

They cite Motorhead, Melvins and Apshyx as musical influences and you can certainly hear elements of Motorhead’s full-frontal and straightforward attack throughout the album, especially on album opener “Spit” and “The Stoning”, where Mantar disintegrate our eardrums with a punk’n’roll bombast akin to the work of Lemmy & co.

The murky, gloomy influence of Asphyx is also evident on some occasions, most notably on tracks like “Into the Golden Abyss” and closing song “March of the Crows”, where some crushing, crawling riffs collide with a slow-motion drum battering and tortured vocals to create an overall tone of discomfort and anguish.

Svart Records is best known for the psychedelic doom and black metal of generally good quality, but snapping up a band like Mantar was a wise move as this is surely one of ugliest, most uncompromising albums to ever emerge from their catalogue. It’s nothing new, I reckon, but it is quite difficult to raise a finger or argue against such a threatening, crushing release.

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