Lightning Swords Of Death - The Extra Dimensional Wound
MetalBlade Records
Black Metal
8 songs (44:08)
Release year: 2010
MetalBlade Records
Reviewed by Goat

They may have a rather silly name, but Los Angeles-based servants of darkness Lightning Swords Of Death have anything but silly music. Playing a harsh, guitar-driven form of Black Metal that takes as many cues from Anaal Nathrakh as it does from Immortal, as gnarly and blastbeat-ridden as a rotten tree trunk is full of worms. There are elements of Thrash and Death Metal woven in, but for the most part The Extra Dimensional Wound (the band’s second full-length) is Black to the bitter core. And it’s a very enjoyable darkness, relying on plentiful and varied riffs and having an interesting approach to songwriting that results in headbangable yet audibly dark and intense material.

It’s the songwriting that really wins the battle for Lightning Swords Of Death in the end. Every Black Metal fan has heard this kind of band, brutal, intense and technically skilled, but it’s the variety that counts, and The Extra Dimensional Wound keeps you gripped, never doing the same thing twice and never less than a vibrant listen. The title track starts with almost Doomish foreboding, Autarch’s harsh snarls positively bestial, before the band launch into a speedy attack, even bassist Menno’s contribution being audible. These guys are probably one of the very few Black Metal bands around that can get away with choruses, as they prove here with a passionate invocatory plea for lighting strikes. Later tracks are perhaps even more vicious and torrential, especially Nihilistic Stench, whilst the awesomely-titled Damnation Pentastrike wins the catchy award as it rocks with a vengeance, launching into epic land towards the end of its six-minute length before finishing with a militaristic drum tattoo.

As mentioned, the band mix it up well. Venter Of The Black Beast is a slow and grinding monolith like something from the last Watain album, and Zwartgallig is a two-minute interlude that’s actually worth more than one listen, but it’s fourteen-minute finale Paths To Chaos that really stays with you. It’s not as ground-shakingly ambitious or as gloriously epic as it could be, but it is pretty fantastic, there being a length bit of ambience in the middle which dissolves into bass-driven meandering and a resurge of viciousness – a more than admirable attempt, which ultimately sums this album up well. Fine, so Lightning Swords Of Death may not be the most original act in town, but they simply don’t do filler; the few tracks not mentioned are also excellent, Vorticating Into Scars and Invoke The Desolate One brutal and bilious assaults on your ears that fill in the gaps perfectly. Those who like their Black Metal to kick ass and take names will appreciate this album.

Killing Songs :
The Extra Dimensional Wound, Damnation Pentastrike, Paths To Chaos
Goat quoted 82 / 100
Other albums by Lightning Swords Of Death that we have reviewed:
Lightning Swords Of Death - Baphometic Chaosium reviewed by Koeppe and quoted 68 / 100
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