Church of Disgust: Unworldly Summoning

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Church of Disgust: Unworldly Summoning
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Church of Disgust: Unworldly Summoning
Death Metal, Doom Metal
Memento Mori
January 1st, 2014
Release length: 33:33
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Church of Disgust forged out of the depths of San Marcos, Texas in 2010. By the time 2012 hit, the group had become a two-piece, finding Dustin James handling guitar and vocal duties, and Joshua Bokemeyer (also from Common Ignorance) on drums. In 2012 they issued not only their first demo, but also the Invocation of Putrid Worship EP through Filthy Cave Records, a small label based out of Spain. It’s now the start of 2014, and Church of Disgust have signed with Memento Mori to unleash their debut full-length effort, Unworldly Summoning. But is this underground assault one worth taking note of, or is there still room to grow?

Unworldly Summoning starts with “Intro (The Gate),” an ambient piece of noise that seems like a crypt door opening while stones crumble around it. A small sombre acoustic but ushers in the trudging Doom Metal start of “Immemorial Lunacy.” The rich, loud buzz of the guitars and environment feel more at home with the prior forty-seven seconds, confirmed by the similar segment of noise a minute in. Once the introduction is finally out of the way, you’re met with fast paced riffs that take full advantage of the distortion, bringing in a mixture of tight, catchy riffs with mid-tempo paced despair-ridden passages. The echoed gutturals work well enough to match the cryptic landscapes, but there’s little range to them, largely due to the audio quality that makes them incredibly hollow, as well as boring. This can also be said for the short, blunt, but simply furious “Bound and Cast into the Depths.” Riddled with early Death Metal intensity, the hollow vocals add little to make the performance commanding, making this a missed opportunity to create a commanding and dismal offering.

But the deeper you get into this recording, the more a creeping pace is taken advantage of. “Writhing Dominion” relies greatly on slower riffs and the heavy bass presence, allowing for an infectious groove that is simply punishing. It also incorporates in some low tuning, and even brings the volume of the distortions down a little more to allow the vocals room to breathe, and not just appear as the hollow echo that makes up much of the release. “The Great Chamber” is basically the same after the minute plus spoken word audio sample that sets up a ritualistic overtone. Slower paced riffs skirt the line between crippling death and doom atmospheres, being one of the more memorable tracks of the recording next to “Unworldly Summing” and it’s eerie early Doom Metal guitar work at the start. It doesn’t take long before the track heads into a generally slower Death Metal presence with a far more blunt distortion compared to the rest that greatly benefits the groove-filled headbanging mandate until about six minute in when it goes back into the ambient world “Intro (The Gate)” and “Interlude” established in order to wrap things up.

Unworldly Summing is just over thirty-three minutes of raw Death and Doom Metal fleshed out from the styles inner most catacombs. The only problem is that it’s been done before, and done better. The loud distortions mask what strength the vocals have, which is rather minimal since there doesn’t seem to be much range on display even when the music’s volume is a little lower. The band’s biggest strength, however, is the Doom Metal inspired performances, and not the furious blistering cuts of death that are hindered a bit too much by the loud buzzing on the guitars. For a two man piece of analog Death Metal, Church of Disgust churn out a good starting point to their career with Unworldly Summoning.

01. Intro (The Gate) – 0:47
02. Immemorial Lunacy – 4:52
03. Rotting Above Ground – 3:03
04. Writhing Dominion – 3:06
05. Bound and Cast into the Depths – 2:37
06. The Great Chamber – 6:15
07. Interlude – 1:35
08. The Opener of the Way – 3:25
09. Unworldly Summoning – 7:53
Initial Pressing Score: 7/10

Church of Disgust
Church of Disgust

Digital review copy of this release provided by Memento Mori via Transcending Obscurity PR.