DEATH OATH

Death Metal • Turkey
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Death Oath was a band from Kayseri, Turkey that has an unknown history but released one EP and one album.
Thanks to silly puppy for the addition

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DEATH OATH Pernicious Conjure album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Pernicious Conjure
Death Metal 1996

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DEATH OATH Demon's Power album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Demon's Power
Death Metal 1995

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DEATH OATH Pernicious Conjure

Album · 1996 · Death Metal
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siLLy puPPy
When one thinks about 90s metal places like Turkey do not come to mind particularly when it comes the more extreme death and black metal sounds that kept pushing the envelope further and further into harsher and more extreme musical forms. That does not mean of course that there wasn’t a scene in far flung places and as it turns out there were quite a few metal bands that took up extreme metal in Turkey despite its reputation as a Muslim country with little tolerance for Western values and musical decadence. While metal wasn’t exactly as popular as in Western nations there were still some popular bands locally at least which included the thrash / speed metal band Pentagram (different one), the alternative metal band The Climb and even a traditional metal band called Dr Skull but extreme metal was a rare thing indeed.

But there were a few such as the death doom metal band Asafated, thrash bands Kronik and Athena and even death metal bands such as Death Project and Antisilence as well as a handful of black metal bands such as Saboath and Witchtrap but perhaps the most interesting band to emerge out of all them was DEATH OATH that found a way to mix the more extreme elements of death and black metal together with the more melodic compositional styles of classic 80s speed metal and the NWOBHM. So yes metal did exist but mostly in the confines of Istanbul and the capital city so its all the more amazing that DEATH OATH emerged from the center of the nation in the city of Kayseri, which most Westerners have probably even heard of much less aware of extreme metal coming from within its boundaries.

DEATH OATH remains a bit mysterious as there’s little information regarding its history however in its tenure as a band it included the five members of Murat Özkardeş (vocals), Burak Özdemir (guitars), Hamdi Öztürk (guitars), Engin Kamarot (bass) and Hakan Eşsizer (drums). The band released one EP titled “Demon’s Power” in 1994 followed two years later by its only full-length album PERNICIOUS CONJURE which features eight tracks. The album originally appeared as a cassette only edition and has supposedly been remastered and released although i’m not sure how many different formats exist at this time. The album is readily available for consumption on YouTube in its entirety. All i can say is - wow! I wasn’t expecting to actually like this band as much as i do. Although these guys were confined to Turkey, the album title and tracks are all in English so it’s clear that at least the intent of an international presence was in the forefront but like many bands with grandiose ideas didn’t last long enough to brings those dreams into fruition.

Like any good extreme metal album, PERNICIOUS CONJURE delivers an interesting mix of metal influences. The opening “Fallin’ From Eternity” begins with a dark doom fueled intro at a slow tempo before the metal rampaging kicks in. Rooted in melodic riffs most often experienced in the world of NWOBHM, the guitar tones and tremolo picking are more associated with black and death metal but given that the vocals are presented in a raspy delivery of multi-member harmonies, the music sounds rather unique at least for this part of the 90s. The vocal style reminds me a bit of Carcass on the early goregrind albums as it is deliciously evil and demented. The guitar tones are also sharp and create a mesmerizing display of darkness. The music is extremely melodic yet steeped in down-tuned darkness and because of the fact that it straddles the line between black, death and NWOBHM is actually rather unlike most metal bands. In more modern days bands like Absu and Anaal Nathrakh have crafted unique hybrid effects but this is quite innovative for this day and age considering it emerged from the middle of an Islamic Republic. Often the music is bouncy in an anthemic way.

The cream of the crop here is the unique mix of guitar riffs and vocals but the bass has distinct thumping sessions as well. Perhaps the weakest aspect of DEATH OATH is that the drummer isn’t OMG amazing but at the same time his somewhat underwhelming style does get the job done and keeps the focus on the demented lyrical deliveries and twin guitar attacks. Overall i’m quite fond of this obscurity form the middle of Turkey! This is unlike anything you would possibly expect from a city near the area known as Cappadocia. With themes steeped in death, hatred and Satanism, this is one evil as fuck albums and although the tunes are melodic they are balanced out by the filthy grime. Very cool and worth checking out.

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