From the onset, Greece’s Ectoplasma make it immediately clear what sort of death metal record you’re getting. The colourful, yet cryptic artwork, combined with an atmospheric intro and depraved song titles indicate death metal of the purest origins. “Cavern of Foul Unbeings” will take you immediately back to the early 1990s, recalling any number of classic bands. Despite this, the band ignores more obvious homages to the Floridian and New York scenes, instead opting to take a variety of influences to create a sickening cacophony.
It should be no surprise that “Cavern of Foul Unbeings” is often incredibly successful at recreating the cavernous sound that plenty of death metal utilizes. The opening to “Mortified and Despised” is a crushing experience, but the band quickly takes a turn for more upbeat riffs in the verse. Ectoplasma’s ability to change focus several times within each song helps to retain interest for the lengthy 53-minute runtime of this record. If you’re starting to feel sick of a doomier section, than something thrashier will quickly erupt. But then the band can instantly move to a more traditional tremolo-picking riff. One reason the band excels at so many sounds is their infrequent use of blastbeats; they certainly come up once in a while on the record, but again, it’s when you’re not necessarily expecting it, so they become a welcome addition to the music. Even the risky approach of incorporating samples is executed to perfection in a couple of instances.
Most of the tracks are pretty similar in the amount of diversity they offer, so few of them tend to stand out. Often times, it is more individual sections that are the highlights. “Seized In Cimmerian Darkness”, for example, has one of the most potent riffs on this album, while “Reanimated in Trioxin” offers the catchiest growling. Some of the later songs tend to drag, moreso due to listener fatigue than an actual decline in quality. Things pick up with the cover of Unleashed’s “The Immortal Ones”, a band that Ectoplasma strongly resembles at times. All in all, it makes for an exciting finish to an above average death metal record. While “Cavern of Foul Unbeings” might not be as classic as some of its influences, it is a worthy contender in today’s death metal scene!
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“Seized In Cimmerian Darkness”
“Reanimated in Trioxin”
4.3/5 or 86%.