MORTUARY DRAPE - Black Mirror
November 8, 2023, 3 weeks ago
Italy’s Mortuary Drape have crept out of their coffins with their first full-length in nearly 10 years and the follow-up to 2022 EP Wisdom – Vibration – Repent. Entitled Black Mirror, the album “centers on themes of magical rites, real events and spells that are in a parallel world that bind us to our past lives.” These occult themes drive home a record full of blackened heavy metal with a thrashing edge.
Sole remaining original member Wildness Perversion has forged a steady lineup with bassist S.C., lead guitarist S.R., and rhythm guitarist DC all having entered the cult in 2010 with Wildness abdicating the drum chair to M.T. (who has also played with Blaze Bayley) in 2019.
Wildness’ ghoulish, croaking vocals creak behind efficiently potent heavy metal with an especially pronounced bass presence – there are some slick rhythms that pop and reminds of Overkill’s D.D. Verni. Opening track “Restless Death” sets the tone with intimidating keys that launches into a doom-laden riff that transforms to an up-tempo rager. It’s the best of the bunch, but that’s not a bad thing as Mortuary Drape weave through dark melodies with vibrant and impressive musicianship. The music is mostly up-tempo basically nearing thrash metal, but the interplay between the guitars and drums is classy and shows a technical prowess similar to those early Mercyful Fate records.
“Rattle Breath” displays a more ominous atmosphere with sinister drums and the closing title track shows a cold, breathless, ether that adds to the horror factor of the lyrical topics and Black Mirror could have used more of these threatening, disturbing features to enhance the lure of the record. With that said – Black Mirror is a clear reflection of effective, ghastly heavy metal that should please longtime fans.