Necromantical Invocation - Dogme et Ritual de la Haute Magie (demo)
Regain Records
Black Metal, Ambient
4 songs (32:57)
Release year: 2021
Bandcamp, Regain Records
Reviewed by Goat

A new project from the perennially underrated black metal hotspot that is Greece, Necromantical Invocation are a one-man band masterminded by Kawir/Walpurgia bassist Echetleos. And for a debut demo, the wordily-titled Dogme et Ritual de la Haute Magie is impressive if not one for everyone, beginning with spoken female word and synth piece Nυχτερινή Επίίλησ before Necromantical Ritual kicks in, channelling the power of his countrymen such as Rotting Christ's early attacks on the genre with the keyboard-backed assault. There's enjoyably old-school guitar leads to kick things off before the bass-led rumbling, vocals a mix of sinister gasps and snarls, and although slightly long at over ten minutes has enough of that classic Hellenic magic to keep you enthralled.

Sadly, the rest of the demo lags behind. A mixture of acoustic guitar and piano opens the nearly sixteen-minute title track, whispered vocals and Burzumic keyboard lines giving it an initial neofolk vibe that turns more theatrical thanks to the various vocals that join in (including female and credited 'old man's voice' and 'child's voice'). Something of a black metal Avantasia, then? Not quite, the slow build pausing around the seventh minute mark as a bass solos, then remains beneath the acoustic guitar and whispers. Later a violin and even a saxophone join, but it's all very slow and stately and doesn't leave much of an impression beyond the vaguely louche atmosphere that the saxophone always brings. Another keyboard and spoken word piece in Αι Σκιαί Του Άδου closes the demo, something that feels very important to its creator but struggles a little in putting across quite why. Still, those that love early Greek black metal and experimental ambience will find magic in these dark rituals, out now on tape and digital, and coming later this month on CD and limited vinyl.

Killing Songs :
Necromantical Ritual
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