Album Title: 
Cavern Of Foul Beings
Release Date: 
Monday, January 22, 2018
Review Type: 

The meaning of ‘ectoplasma’ is like the excretion of tangible material, or also spiritual energy, being separated or projected when being in a trancelike state, or by the substantification of ghosts / spirits / immaterial entities transforming into a physical shape. It comes from the Greek language (‘ektos’, which means ‘external’, and plasma, you know…), and that’s exactly the country where this same-named band hails from as well.

The band Ectoplasma was formed by two musicians (known from e.g. Carnal Dread, Humanity Zero, Vultur and Forced In) to pay tribute to the Death Metal scene of the late eighties and early nineties. Both live as via studio recordings, their ‘popularity’ grew enormously, at least, and especially, in their home country. Then Giannis ‘Grim’ Panigiotidis (vocals + lyrics and bass) and George Wolf (guitars) recruited lead guitarist Alastor (also in Vultur) and (very famous) drummer Giannis ‘Maelstrom’ Botsis (Embrace Of Thorns, Dephosphorus, Ravencult, Principality Of Hell, Thou Art Lord and many more), a collaboration that resulted in Cavern Of Foul Beings, the second full length for the band. And after signing to Memento Mori for the release of Cavern Of Foul Beings, they will make name outside the borders of Greece too, finally.

The eleven titles clock almost fifty minutes, and the compact disc shows us a reason to give the right to conquer the world. Damn, what a f*cked-up Old School attitude! This is a modern representation of what the late eighties and earlier nineties offered our sick / sickened / sickening world. Autopsy, Grave, Demigod, Benediction, Unleashed, Repulsion, Carnage and so on, that’s the kind of nastiness being served by this quartet.

Every single piss, sorry, piece on this sonic monster reeks of the most disgusting, vomit-spitting and most ugly grotesquery and beauty of the scene twenty-five to thirty years ago. The muddy sound (with a great mix, and a monumental, raw-edged production) strengthens that old styled attitude a lot, with a well-balanced touch of elegance for all players involved. The album is filled with those elements that did characterise the scene back then: many changes in speed (from slower passages to frenzy outbursts), groovy rhythms, technical leads (more than once reminding of the Swedish scene especially), eardrum-piercing solos (sometimes simply blowing your tiny brain out of your tiny skull), devastating and pounding drums, thunderous basses and deep, foul, rotten grunts (and even a couple of squealing guttural vomit eruptions) – the latter representing some sick mixture of Van Drunen / Ingram / Tardy / Willetts. Also present are the typifying samples taken from horror movies (limited in presence, short in performance, but oh so familiar). The material thrashes like a pyroclastic avalanche, leaving no room to breathe safely. There is an energy so majestic, continuously leaving the listener attentive, leaving no room for boredom or distraction.

As the smart ones might notice, this material lacks originality. Indeed, it is like a puzzle with stones from known, explored and previously uncovered elements. But as mentioned in many reviews, I not give about being renewing if the result comes close to the roots of all nastiness. Ectoplasma do not just ‘come close’; they do equal the superior level of the bands I referred to in a former paragraph. In a row with acts like Graveyard (the Spanish one), Vastum, Casket Huffer or Inhumanity, amongst many others, the revival (though the scene never died!) of this morbid excellence gets enriched by another highly interesting band with another cool record.