Divine Eve - Vengeful and Obstinate
Ibex Moon Records
4 songs (17'06")
Release year: 2009
Reviewed by Alex

Years ago I happened to e-mail communicate with Michael Sleavin when he was trying to get his atmospheric black metal outfit Infernal Oak going. That band never took off and I never got the demo to listen to. Little did I know that Michael Sleavin of Infernal Oak was the same guy on Divine Eve, the band from Texas which in 1993 released As the Angels Weep EP on Nuclear Blast. That EP generated a lot of buzz, but Divine Eve went through lots of hiatus not amounting to much after the original promise.

Seventeen years after their first EP (and Infernal Oak in between) Divine Eve have reunited with the 2/3 of their original lineup to release another EP, now on Ibex Moon, the label of Incantation’s John McEntee, who knows a thing or two when it gets to cult death metal.

The style Divine Eve plays is doomdeath, but it isn’t the gothic romantic doomdeath of more recent Scandinavian acts like Draconian or Swallow the Sun. Instead, the doom of Divine Eve is the menacing stare of Celtic Frost and rock rhythms of Hellhammer, at times frozen into the funeral depths of Rigor Sardonicous. The death of Divine Eve harkens back all the way to the older Obituary days with the grinding lead of early Entombed or Nihilist thrown in for good measure.

Aside from the crackling flame at the beginning of Whispers of Fire and horns in The Ravages of Heathen Men, there is little about artificial effects in Divine Eve atmosphere. More than anything, the mood is created and maintained with slow twisting riffs (The Ravages of Heathen Men, Grievous Ascendance), the tunes having vividly wretched cheer in them. Turgid morbid spirit hangs heavily over Vengeful and Obstinate. The tempo does pick up in the leads, however, Vindication taking on somewhat an Egyptian motif.

Far away from the modern approach and definitely staying in the realm of old and fuzzy production, Divine Eve is basically one band which remained frozen in its influences for almost two decades. The life and musical development stood still for this band, who are now trying to regain their footing and capture the time missed. A full-length album is said to be the in the works.

Killing Songs :
The Ravages of Heathen Men
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