Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Vampire - Cimmerian Shade EP (2015)

I am not a vinyl collector. I've got a stack of old records from back in my youth, and a couple I've gotten through the years, or sent for review, but the CD is my format of choice, and things like the Cimmerian Shade 10" EP are some of the few reasons I regret that. Yes, I'm aware that this was available on a special tour edition of the debut, but I'm stuck with my normal copy of that disc, and a digital of Cimmerian Shade. So be it, but obviousy, you can already tell that I think this is fucking awesome, in fact a few of the tunes on this are among my favorite by Vampire, and that's saying a lot because the band is tremendous, and has yet to fail me in any regard, except for the arguable failure of not having an exclusive CD version of the EP for schlubs like this one...

Not as savage as the albums to follow it, but extremely compelling, melodic black metal ("Pyre of the Harvest Queen") that rages down much of the same roots, while the 'B' side tracks "Night Hunter" and "Hexahedron" are scorching examples of the band's more blackened/thrash, just nasty ass metal that blitzes on past you and leaves you branded with some catchy licks among chords powered by the classics like Hellhammer, Bathory, Venom, Slayer, and their ilk; only with that melodic black stuff mixed in there to make them even more multi-faceted. The instrumental "Sleeper in the Deep" is the odd one out here, a tranquil blend of ambient and acoustic guitars which is totally 'fine', but that's a crime when its matched up with all the rest of these songs. Cimmerian Shade is fantastic and played out like a quick and delicious notification that their excellent eponymous debut was not just going to prove a fluke. Curse you, vinyl collectors! By which I mean 'pity me'. :(

Verdict: Win [8.75/10]


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