MORTUARY DRAPE - Spiritual Independence (Iron Tyrant, 2014)
MORTUARY DRAPE grown to be one of the cult bands of the Dark Italian movement. No matter if its 70s bands like JACULA, ANTONIUS REX, progressive bizarre music like GOBLIN, 80s darkness like DEATH SS, BLACK HOLE, BULLDOZER, PAUL CHAIN or some-what later stuff like MORTUARY DRAPE, EPITAPH, ABYSMAL GRIEF, Italians were always able to capture that peculiar feeling beyond the grave.
10 years passed since the mostly disappointing “Buried in Time“, though a split with SHINING was released in 2013 only to raise more the eyebrows of the fans. “Spiritual Independence” stars with a creepy and effective intro with keys and violins, just to be followed by the first metal song “Lithany”, reminding us of KING DIAMOND with its haunting chants, howls and mad laughter. “Once I Read” starts again with riffs like King Diamond, and continues the same, even the dark, but melodic guitar solos are executed by the techniques of the master. “Natural Death” hits more ritualistic and doomy pace, with some disturbing cries at the end. The next few songs run through me without outstanding parts. The main trick is that the songs sometimes lacks that crypt-stench feeling that made so timeless those earlier releases. It is dark, it is haunting from time to time, but the obscure darkness of the past it’s here only in fragments. Maybe the songs are too thrashy and too fast and too short sometimes, with no time for developing the gloomy themes.
Dark Italian madness in these 46 minutes, with some remarkable parts and few unmemorable ones. Not too much haunting keyboards as in the past, less ritualistic, less ceremonial, less necromantic, but more 80s obscure thrash combined with King Diamond and the well-known Mortuary Drape patterns. Fortunately Wildness Perversion’s vocals are raspy and macabre as in the old times.