Rexor - Ain
Black Metal
9 songs (36:51)
Release year: 2008
Reviewed by Pete

Black metal can be a grandiose and innovative genre of metal encapsulating great musicianship, progressive ideas and vicious brutality. Sadly, and this can also be said for many forms of metal, when it’s bad it’s can be an embarrassing load of old dire toss with bands going through the motions with sub-standard production, copycat song writing and laughable imagery. Rexor’s debut album for Casket Music is sadly leaning towards the latter, although not totally laughable, it’s an uninspired ‘heard it all before’ journey through the a-z of black metal.

Rexor rose to being in Florence from the ashes of two local thrash-death metal bands, Garant and Suthen Death. After releasing the demo, Infernum Dominium in 2004 they received favourable reviews from the specialised press. Having never heard the aforementioned demo, Ain must be taken on face value and their music put into the context of black metal, as would be the case with any album of any genre. All the clichés are evident with Ain; the almost unreadable logo, dark, menacing and colourless booklet, random historical diabolic gothic imagery, seemingly random phrases such as '…our dark desires will rise into an obscured infinity' and band members with made-up black and white faces. Throw in some battleaxes, studded belts and an armband with eight-inch nails protruding from it and you'll understand where Rexor are coming from. It's nothing you haven't already seen before (but done a lot better about twenty years ago), and quite frankly it causes the eyes to roll, the cheeks to puff out during an exhale and the tongue to tut.

The tinny production disguises whatever decent ideas Rexor have. Put Ain on any sort of high volume and the ears begin to hurt, not through sheer sonic bliss, but through mid-tone grate. There's little innovation in Ain, certainly nothing that you can't get off a Gorgoroth album. It's a pretty standard, blast beat tuneless thrash-a-thon with the singer, Hate (yes, that's his name), adding his dour blood curdling screams to the uninspired dirges. Cradle Of Filth this isn't, in fact it's aeons away from being anything that classy.

For the extreme metal fans that love to dwell in the underground black metal scene Ain may just spark some interest. I do think with a little time and patience, along with a meatier production, Rexor could produce something that doesn't annoy or sound like someone else's cast offs. It sounds and looks cheap, which it probably is, and it would be unfair for me to complain any further. But, production and imagery aside, I found little in Ain to get excited about, certainly nothing when compared to the latest Belphegor album.

Killing Songs :
Pete quoted 33 / 100
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