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Glorior Belli - "The Great Southern Darkness" (CD)

Glorior Belli - "The Great Southern Darkness" CD cover image

"The Great Southern Darkness" track listing:

1. Dark Gnosis
2. Secret Ride to Rebellion
3. They Call Me Black Devil
4. Negative Incarnate
5. Bring Down the Cosmic Scheme
6. The Great Southern Darkness
7. The Follhardy Venture
8. Per Nox Regna
9. The Science of Shifting
10. Chaos Manifested
11. Horns in my Pathway

Reviewed by on November 22, 2011

"'The Great Southern Darkness' is one of the best mixes of the intensity of blues and chaos of metal. Although Glorior Belli lives far away from the American south, the band seems to know and love it better than some musicians that actually live there."

Glorior Belli likes many kinds of music and that is evident in the album “The Great Southern Darkness.” You can definitely hear the New Orleans acts that the band cites as its influences, as well as the black metal that qualifies the group to be termed a metal band. The themes of anguish, dark revelations, and disgust can be heard over the firing squad drumming and melodic riffs, offering a layer of intrigue and anger.

Julien’s guitar has a Soilent Green-esque blues style throughout mixed with moments of regular fast strumming and melodies, along with what seems like slowed down, but still black metal based, riffs. Some songs open with a dark bluesy melody like the title track and “Horns in my Pathway,” which begins bluesy, swells to metal, recedes to blues, and swells again. “They Call Me Black Devil,” the coolest song name ever, has the most dark blues guitar of the album with great breakdowns and clean guitar wails layered over a grungy drone. F.’s bass grooves provide a great background that’s very textural; the tones work well together, an eerie ambience of Darkthrone and more warm sounding doom stylings like Cathedral and Candlemass. The bass also sounds amazing in “Bring Down the Cosmic Scheme” by playing a nearly Jeff Beck sounding melody against the more black metal guitars.

Julien also has cool vocals throughout each song except for “Per Nox Regna” and “Chaos Manifested,” which are instrumental. He begins with vicious, howling growls in “Dark Gnosis” and pure demonic deep growls in “The Foolhardy Venture,” but shows that he has versatility in the title track with sung vocals that match very well with the soulful guitar riffs. “Horns is my Path” was the best mix of his sick growls with the blues rock guitar and slow drums. Influences can be heard ranging from bands like Immortal to Crowbar to The Melvins and even further into the abyss like Apatharia.

“The Great Southern Darkness” is one of the best mixes of the intensity of blues and chaos of metal. Although Glorior Belli lives far away from the American south, the band seems to know and love it better than some musicians that actually live there.

Highs: Amazing mashup of southern blues and cold black metal.

Lows: I couldn’t find any flaws.

Bottom line: Great listen for the metalhead who likes genre-bending.

Rated 5.0 out of 5 skulls
5.0 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)