The Unconquerable Dark
4th September 2015 – Century Media Records
01. Plague Worship
02. In The Wake Ov The Wolf
03. Young Gloom
04. L’Appel Du Vide
05. Vermintide (ft. Eddie Hermida)
06. Piece Of Ash
07. The Masquerade
08. A Pale Procession II: Death March
09. I’m So Tired Of Sighing. Please Lord, Let It Be Light
Hull’s Black Tongue have been carving themselves a name throughout the metal world with their unfathomably heavy, down tempo take on deathcore for a couple of years now. Their influence over the scene is undeniable already; they have brought a level of groove, depth, and unabashed heaviness to a genre that was becoming both stagnant and shallow, and even spawned their own wave of copycats.
Since the release of 2013′s Falsifier, Black Tongue have injected this heady and darkened venom into a niche that has left fans foaming at the mouth for a full length. The Unconquerable Dark is that full length, but does it stack up against the band’s previous output?
Opener “Plague Worship” goes straight for the jugular, following a short and somewhat flirtatious hunt that gives way to the absolute dominance of Black Tongue’s signature low, slow guitars dragging you in, and Alex Teyen’s sharpened snarls tearing chunks as the track flows from breakdown to breakdown; they’re malevolent and they’re out to scar.
From the unrelenting chugs of the opener comes “In The Wake Ov The Wolf“, and with it a kind of melody that truly showcases the band’s craft in all its glory. First single “L’appel Du Vide” – “The Call of The Void” in French – too, is probably one of the most groove laden and anthemic deathcore tracks ever released. Its jagged chugs and black metal jaunts truly demonstrates the darkness this album endeavours to push upon the listener. The title itself references the self destructive nature within all of us: the need to self sabotage; a whispering voice that begs “Oh how I long to be one with the void again.” It’s powerful, and ingrains itself into your subconscious for a good long while afterwards.
Suicide Silence‘s Eddie Hermida lends his piercing high screams to “Vermintide“, adding a level of diversity to a record that, whilst neither repetitive nor monotonous, seeks diversity in its sound. It serves to subvert the listener in preparation for “The Masquerade“, which feels like aural decapitation by contrast; its swelling undertones and sniping vocal lines are surgical and sludgy, bringing with them one of the slowest beatdowns ever created. It’s just utterly crushing.
The record closes with “I’m So Tired Of Sighing. Please Lord, Let It Be Light“, in which the memorable and classic Black Tongue chugs return once more, and chanted latin breathes demonic-sounding verses into this last hurrah. The end is abrupt and messy, which sums up both your underwear and your brain after listening to this album.
Black Tongue have not only managed to conquer the dark; they’ve straight up made it their bitch. An exercise in down tempo destruction, The Unconquerable Dark goes unparalleled by the scene at large. It is an amalgamation of extreme metal in its purest form: both fresh and memorable, these tracks are begging to be played live, and when they do there will be some extremely sore limbs and a pile of mangled bodies. Who needs to be able to move their necks anyway, right?