The Wretched End : Inroads

They Say :- In the summer of 2011 THE WRETCHED END returned to Strand Studio to begin recording their second album, entitled “Inroads”. The recording was completed by the end of 2011.
“Inroads” is scheduled for release spring 2012 through Nocturnal Art Prod/ Candlelight Records worldwide.  Yet again, THE WRETCHED END has worked with Trine + Kim Design studio for the album design, following up in the same cold, desolate and apocalyptic style. THE WRETCHED END has also recorded a music video for the track “Death by Nature”. The video was shot and edited in rural Norway in cooperation with the Canadian artist VEX.

We say :- The continuing adventures of what Samoth from Emperor went and did next has its latest installment with the blistering roar that is second album Inroads. Now ensconced in the bosom of European label Candlelight (who know a thing or two about these sort of things) The Wretched End’s latest caustic offering is as efficient as a Mike Tyson punch to the cranium.

Whilst former frontman Ihsahn has already carved himself a pretty solid niche as the black metal genius de nos jours , those of us who can remember these sort of things will recall Emperor were actually a group. There remains, then, a solid interest in Samoth and The Wretched End, his project with former Zyklon (remember them? No, me either) bassist Cosmos and Dark Funeral’s Nils Fjellstrom was always going to be of interest to black metal fans of all shades.

The Wretched End aren’t a black metal band though; their schtick is more firmly in the death metal tradition and the added light and nuance that the band’s obvious love of thrash metal makes this an intriguing and never less than interesting diversion.

Opening track Tyrant of the Mountain is a ferocious death metal howl, all lyrical content pointing to the impending apocalypse, Armageddon and the like. Honestly, you weren’t really expecting a treatise on quantum physics were you? This is dark matter but it’s not Dark Matter, if you see what I mean. You get more of the same on Cold Iron Soul which has some thrashy elements buried in its dark riffage. The Haunting Ground is proper old school thrash though, even if the death metal growls fight it to the ground for aural supremacy.

Fear Propaganda sounds like Slayer overdosing on speed whilst Blackthorn Winter has that classic black metal echoing guitar part played in a fridge. You know what I mean. Highlight of the record is the brilliant, cacophonous death roar that is Death by Nature. It’s a track with a vice like grip, its relentless riff marching across the song’s structure like an invading army.

In Roads is not a record that you’re going to be pontificating is the new benchmark in all things death but it does have charm. The playing is technically sharp but not overbearingly so and the song-craft whilst not ground-breaking remains solid throughout. In Roads is a bit of a grower; over time, I’ve come to warm to its frosty belligerence and eternal nihilism. As you might expect, it’s a cold hearted mean record but it is a rather lovely thing all the same. By lovely, obviously I meant dark horrible and claustrophobic. You knew that already.

You wouldn’t have it any other way.