Paria - Surrealist Satanist
World Terror Committee
Black Metal
7 songs (44:04)
Release year: 2013
Paria, World Terror Committee
Reviewed by Goat

When an album drops into your promotional inbox bearing that title and that artwork, something like Dødheimsgard meets Electric Wizard, you can only bump it up to the top of your to-do list. And Germany’s Paria, active since 1995 with just two prior full-lengths before this, have certainly made a good black metal album, although it’s nowhere near as out-there as the name and artwork suggest. The wackiest thing present is the intro, Psychonautikkch Paradigma, which is all floating sound effects and Kyuss-esque guitar fuzz – when the following title track kicks in, it’s very black metal, from rasping vocalist to flailing guitar leads and galloping drums. Paria are skilled musicians, however, and in the echoing distortions that follow you can hear something of a careful structure to the deranged racket – shades of earlier Nachtmystium albums with more than a hint of Satanic Art-era Dødheimsgard can be heard, especially when vocalist Panzerdaemon starts his grand clean singing, lasting but a few seconds before he’s back to snarls.

As the album continues it’s clear that Paria have created quite the interesting listen. The Green Angels of Obscurity is all blastbeats and raging fury, but hidden beneath are carefully-constructed riffing of quite atmospheric potency, subtly technical and capable of a darkly intense atmosphere despite the surface chaos. It holds your attention utterly with the promise of further progressions, then laughs in your face as the song shimmers in one place, focused utterly on the black metal path. That focus remains utterly, dementedly single-minded at times – the atmospheric effect of Wormlike Proselytism is old-school to the max, touching on very early Enslaved with the whirring guitars. There’s something of Mayhem to (Behold) The Face of the Timeless Usher’s droning vocals and speedy melodies hidden in the distance, and the following nine-minute Sodomsphynx is more chaotic, cymbal splashes and an ever-increasing tempo pulling you with it.

Spiritually, this album is of the late 90s, yet one looking towards the genre’s early days rather than the future. It’s quite an experience, especially when you allow your expectations to be affected by the stylistic presentation and are presented with an album so comfortable in its black metal roots. Surrealist Satanist is a trickster of a record, one to puzzle and bewilder, yet one that fans of black metal are sure to find favour with.

Killing Songs :
Surrealist Satanist, Wormlike Proselytism, Sodomsphynx
Goat quoted 78 / 100
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