SKOLOPENDAR - Territorium

Skolopendar - Territorium

8 songs
33:39 minutes
***** **
Hochwald Rappel


Some bands prefer a secretive existence. Take for instance Skolopendar from Trier. These guys have been around for a couple of years, but finding information about them on the Internet isnít such an easy chore. Their official homepage contains hardly any text, and their Facebook site, while a little better, doesnít offer that much more. They also havenít managed to make it to the Metal Encyclopedia yet.

Maybe itís good to still have such reclusive bands, as they allow you to approach them without any prejudices, apprehensions or expectations. In the case of Skolopendar, the first thing you notice are the German lyrics, something quite rare for an extreme metal band. It is already quite harder to pin down the quintet on a single genre, and again I guess that this is something the band does on purpose. The opener Sieben is about the seven mortal sins enumerated in the Bible, and its length of six minutes allows the band a more sedate approach. Mostly set in mid-tempo, we get a strange hybrid of dark, gothic, doom and death metal. Itís the latter that will later prevail, as the following songs are mostly between three and four minutes long, and possibly because of their more concise length, also display a more direct approach.

The vocals have a rather balanced thrash-to-death ratio and are astonishingly understandable. The albumís sound unfortunately could have had a more transparent and powerful sound. As it is, Territorium feels like a well done demo recording, without the certain something that would give it a chance to stand on its own yet among the more established bands. Itís quite obvious though that Skolopendar play the kind of music they really want to play, and are definitely no fledgling youngsters that try to emulate the hip sound of today. I generally like the band's brutal mid-tempo approach with its occasional faster parts and also its fair amount of melodic moments, but hope that the next time they will invest not only in songwriting, but also in a more appropriate recording environment. Fans of underground death metal should nevertheless check out this still rather obscure band.

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