Coprolith - Cold Grief Relief
Violent Journey Records
Black/Death Metal
10 songs (44:54)
Release year: 2010
Coprolith, Violent Journey Records
Reviewed by Aleksie
Coprolith is a Finnish bunch of ragtags formed in 2001 and after a slew of demos, an EP and a promo, they released their first full-lenght album this summer. Lead by the proficient growls and throaty screams of guitarist Ben Pakarinen, their debut presents a mix of grim black metal with steady touches of death metal splattering the scene. Or as the record company letter describes it, an album unleashing nothing but death, sorrow and hate. The band definitely makes a valiant effort at living up to this goal, even if decapitations en masse isn’t the final product of a listening session.

After a short ominous intro, the tremoloed riffs and blast beats of Losing It set up your expectations appropriately. Aggression and technical mastery keeps hitting imposing levels throughout, but without that many distinctly memorable moments, it’s the kind of savagery that quickly passes by without sticking – the oversaturation sets in quickly. It doesn’t help that the production job tends to scramble the guitars, drums and vocals into a chaotic mush from time to time, which could certainly be an artistic goal in itself, but leaves me just indifferent. To the production’s credit, it keeps the bass quite high in the mix, avoiding the most standard excrement-stinking treble horror that black metal bands often incorporate.

Admittedly, sight variety starts to appear midway with Dead Endless and Hate Rapture, which add some specifically groovier death metal touches, but it still doesn’t improve the overall experience. That is finally achieved near the end with the atmospheric and subtly string-laced instrumental Dream Within Dream that leads into the 10-minute title track, which is definitely my favourite track on this record. The longer length lends itself to more mood changes, slower riffage and eventually even some sweet acoustic guitar. I thought that this would’ve been a great way of ending the record, as the album-finalising cover of Mayhem’s Freezing Moon is a well-made and faithful version to the original, but feels unnecessary after the humongous title track preceding it.

Although I often find myself enjoying extreme metal albums that just go balls to the wall with sonic ass-whooping, for some reason Cold Grief Relief is at its most mediocre when doing so and at the most enjoyable when experimenting beyond standard death/black metal annihilation. Coprolith clearly has ambition to go further with their sound, so future releases hopefully do so in even grander fashion. If your thing 24/7 is just a swarm of devastating riffs and general misanthropy, I recommend you immediately add 10-15 points to my scoring, but I was left wanting more of the least featured elements on this record.

Full songs in full force from MySpace

Killing Songs :
Dream Within Dream & Cold Grief Relief
Aleksie quoted 65 / 100
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