Although the high peak of retro/occult rock craze are well behind us, the hype for this style still does not fall down that easily and we can see new names popping here and there on the biggest metal labels trying to relive the glories of the bygone era. You can easily add Brimstone Coven to the list of good troops dealing with this sound as their Metal Blade debut (the label has re-released their first two releases) appropripriately titled Black Magic proves very clear – at the beginning of the year we have one very promising new name from Metal Blade, just like it was the case last year with Visigoth. Like the immortal poet said, Brimstone Coven were definitely born too late as their music sounds like it came straight from the seventies’ era of heavy rock so you could throw all the usual suspects like Black Sabbath, Blue Cheer and Pentagram to describe the sound found on Black Magic. What is one big plus for Brimstone Coven in my eyes is the fact that they are very vocal about the occult and mystical leanings in their sound, which is the thing that I find to be very enthralling with any band dealing with harder music. Brimstone Coven are equally good in unleashing simple riff headbanging fury reminscent to Iommi in opening title track and letting loose some experimental jams in Beyond the Astral, and what sets this band apart from the similar ilk is their clever use of three part vocal harmonies which is really something that is rarely heard nowadays. Everything on Black Magic just sreams of times that has passed and it is slippery task, one band can easily veer into cheap retro territory but Brimstone Coven have suceeded in making one veritable record full of proper vibes that has good songs above all. Don’t write them off as some gimmick trend band and take a lsten for yourself with open mind.
- Metal Blade Records CD
- Zvonko Savic (8)