RIPPIKOULU — Musta seremonia (review)

RIPPIKOULU — Musta seremonia album cover Demo · 1993 · Death-Doom Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
3.5/5 ·
UMUR
"Musta seremonia" ("The Black Ceremony") is the second demo recording by Finnish death-doom metal act Rippikoulu. The demo was independently released in 1993 and it would be the band´s last recording before disbanding in 1995 after the death of guitarist Marko Henriksson. After a two year mourning period the band tried to carry on, but they found it impossible without Henriksen and finally officially folded in 1999. They´ve since reunited and have released the "Ulvaja" EP in 2014.

Stylistically the material on "Musta seremonia" continues the ultra heavy death metal/death-doom metal style of the 1992 "Mutaation aiheuttama sisäinen mätäneminen" ("Internal Rotting Caused by Mutation") demo. The songtitles and lyrics are still in the Finnish language, but as the case was on the preceding demo, it doesn´t matter much, as you probably won´t be able to pick out many words as the deep growling vocals are pretty much unintelligible. While Rippikoulu still play some fast-paced, aggressive, and energetic death metal parts, the pendulum has predominantly swung towards the ultra heavy death-doom metal part of their sound. These guys are masters at playing some sludgy brutal death-doom, and while the faster parts are great for the variation of their music, it´s not where they excel.

Featuring six tracks and a total playing time of 31:39 minutes "Musta seremonia" could well have been released a full-length studio album, and the quality of the recording is also close to having the right ingredients for that. It´s pretty raw and unpolished and when the morbid lead guitar parts kick in, the tone isn´t that well sounding, but other than that this could just as well have been released as the band´s debut album. This is a release for those who enjoy their old school death metal with a doomy touch and a gloomy atmosphere. A 3.5 star (70%) rating is well deserved.
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