Location: Brisbane, Queensland
Genre: Black metal, crust
Location: Baltimore, Maryland
Genre: Black metal, grindcore
Split CD: Harbingers Of War
Format: Digital, streaming
Release date: September 30, 2019
I love a good collaboration of artists, and a delicious Split to sink my teeth into. “Harbingers Of War” the 2019 Split release by black/crust metal band Drugoth and the black/grindcore solo project Odinsgoat was an intentionally fast (in the literal sense), dark and filthy listen.
Drugoth, made up of members Shograath & Drugoth is from Brisbane, Australia. The lads have offered up a bitter, bleeding sound of black metal. With crust punk beats and abruptness creating a stripped back to essentials and original sound. This duo has given just the right amount of distortion to keep their ambiance murky yet their noise is clear enough to really allow the listener to hear all the elements that bring their three track contribution to this Split together in which I can describe as a mean and brutal manner.
“Sunduam” starts this EP off to a deadly dark start with a unique style from vocalist Drugoth who grunts his lyrics with a harsh attitude and the occasional low guttural that assists to harden the impact of the theme of this track, keeping in line with Drugoth’s inspiration, which is siphoned from the darker side of Middle Earth.
The old school black/punk sounds are evident within the second track, “Nixir”. This number is ladled with those traditional punk beats, brutish riffs, and gruff vocal technique.
The pace changes up to slightly milder, yet doesn't lack in heavy burn during “Gronda”. Running just over three minutes and carrying an underground atmosphere, I was able to get my head into this for more than a teasing distance and I felt grateful for this. Vocalist Drugoth conveys his lyrics with an unusually addictive vocal fold that seems to seethe from his guts and roll off the tip of his tongue. “Grond” is a raw, roughneck number with a dirty ambiance as chants of "Grond" see this song out with force.
Odinsgoat, from Baltimore, USA slam into this split with a low-fi production in “Burzthauk”, throwing in an ominous vibe with crawling, inaudible low vocals before nicely executed scathing shrieks, and then it’s unfortunately over! Yes, like Drugoth's tracks, this too was a tease. However, we wouldn't expect more, given this project is stained so good with the essence of Grindcore song lengths.
“Vadokan Korb” is just shy of one minute, yet is packed with ruthless sounds. “Tharm Bartas” and “Zuzar” were the carrots dangled in front of me. The hazy and thick ambiance, the callousness of the riffs and lurid screams… I wanted more.
The entire Split spans for just over six minutes and it is certain that this is a very cool listen. As teasing as it was for me, it only proves I enjoyed it and was looking for more.
The sounds produced by Drugoth and Odinsgoat are aligned to black metal, punk and of course grindcore, therefore if you are seeking a Split with "standard" song duration, you will not find it in “Harbingers Of War”, and this is exactly how these bands intended the experience to be. My advice is, give it a go - put it on, turn it up loud and replay it at your will. -Kelly Tee
Drugoth: Drums, vocals
Odinsgoat: All vocals and instruments
1. Drugoth - Sunduam
2. Drugoth - Nixir
3. Drugoth - Grond
4. Odinsgoat - Burzthauk
5. Odinsgoat - Tharm Bartas
6. Odinsgoat - Vadokan Korb
7. Odinsgoat - Zuzar