Castevet/Mounds Of Ash

Mounds of Ash2010 debut album from the NYC-based Metal outfit. Since their formation in 2007, Castevet has built quite a reputation within the underground scene. Delivering on the promise of their vicious live show, the trio’s 2009 single ‘Stones/Salts’ was a virulent mix of Post-Hardcore and dissonant Black Metal that sold out immediately. Mounds Of Ash is Castevet’s debut full-length. Recorded at The Thousand Caves Studios with Colin Marston, this punishing offering expands on their prior output in all respects–taking influence from the avant-garde elements of mid ’90s Norwegian Black Metal bands like Ved Buens Ende and Fleurety, and classic early 90s Metalcore groups like Rorschach and Deadguy. The album solidifies Castevet’s standing as one of New York’s most promising Metal bands alongside like-minded acts Krallice and Liturgy.

Red Star Sans Chastity—-From the very first notes of this track, I am blown away by all of the convoluted noise that this band manages to make. The deepness of the bass is constant, but comes at you even louder in quick spurts offset by the lead guitar. The vocal is typical fare, unfortunate that you are unable to catch even a word of the lyrics. If the intention of this band was to create a huge noise, they really succeeded.

Mounds Of Ash—-again, with all the deepness…it comes across more as poor production than style to me. The drums are really upfront in the mix and the lead guitar suffers from the same muted sounds of the production. The vocal is literally demonic and distorted with anger. This is nice, but not something I will reach for on a regular basis.

Grey Matter—-With little more than a breath of respite, this song barrells right out of the gate straight at your face. The drums again, set the pace for the song and the vocals are so heavy and pushed back that you can not catch a single word. With no lyric sheet, this is a problem for me. I like the sudden tempo changes on this track, something not heard on previous tracks. This is good Black Metal, but it lacks the finesse of more extablished and seasoned band production.

Red Aura—-This is so layered and noisy that it reminds me of obscure Industrial Metal rather than the Black Metal is professes to be. The voice is hoarse and unintelligible….the guitars are muted and suffer because of this. The future of this band is going to haveto include better production and a lyric sheet.

Stones—-Wow….this is a literal cascade of noise and layers of sound that comes together as a mish mash of sounds rather musical notes. My problem with this band is that there is no sense of melody to be found anywhere on this disc. This is all a bunch of people playing there own thing and trying to construct a song out of it. For me this is a miserable failure.

Breathed In Smoke—-Again, one song sings to meld into the other. This begins with a much slower tempo, but the sound is recorded so deep that the only think you really make out is the steady drum in the backdrop. This is really a disappointment for me.

Harvester—-Even mopre barrages of noise, at least this track has a slight bit of melody to it. All in all, this release managed to give me a headache and very little enjoyment.

* out of 5


2 Responses to “Castevet/Mounds Of Ash”

  1. Are you retarded? Were you listening to 128 kbps MP3s or something? The melodies on this CD are absolutely unrelenting and the production is damn near perfect.

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