Forgotten Tomb: …And Don’t Deliver Us From Evil

One day, while looking for some depressing, suicidal, angst-spewing black metal, came across the name of Forgotten Tomb.  A tomb that is forgotten?  Does it get any more forlorn?  It would have to be both depressing and good, correct?  Yes, or make that more like yeeeeessssssss, well most of it.  ...And Don't Deliver Us From Evil marks something of a turning point one could possibly assume, because Italy's Forgotten Tomb started out as pretty traditional depressive black metal, but by this one they've hit more of a groove, which is to their benefit.  Sometimes you need a bit of a groove, even if it's a depressive groove, to make your sound more accessible.  This isn't to say Forgotten Tomb has sold themselves to the corporate Gods of corruption, it just means they've gotten smarter.  There's only so long you can hang around a bunch of guys cutting albums solo in the basement of their grandmother's house before you get wise to the fact that all the corpse paint is just hiding a sad little man who spends too much time at comicons and too little with the ladies.  Let's all take a moment to step away from that and get a little serious about our music, for once, can we?  It kind of makes it better to listen to and we don't have to pretend we write our u's with a 'v'.  We're all for raw and corrupt around here, but sometimes if you don't live the 'raw', it ends up unpalatable.  Sometimes we all need to move on and listen to something that's well-written, well-produced, and which still makes us want to jump out of a window clutching at our past feebly as we scream into nothingness.

 

 

...And Don't Deliver Us From Evil uses some pretty obvious symbolization on the cover, not that it's a bad thing, because it has a certain level of decayed taste to it that takes what would otherwise be a "are you serious guys" reference to "hmm, I guess that can be used if done right" reference.  And that's pretty much what it sounds like.  It opens with "Deprived", which easily sets the tone of groove you're going to find in this one, as well as the lyrical devastation.  The groove is a bit unusual for suicidal/depressive black metal, but Forgotten Tomb have great command of it, and they can turn tempo and style without you noticing.  Lyrical devastation we shall hereby categorize and define as "good suicide letter" in quality.  The kind of thing where, when you read it, you say, "hmm, well, can't argue with that."  It's not an easy accomplishment, either, as so many gothic black metal and lesser suicidal black metal bands have shown over the years with things to banal to mention lest we risk turning our brain power back about fifteen years.  The title track takes second place among the listing, and man does it kill.  Let's take a reference from earlier in this review and say yet again yeeeeesssssssss.  "...And Don't Deliver Us From Evil" is probably one of the greatest black metal songs ever written.  It shows how simplicity can be power, with a driving, fairly basic main line with perfect atmosphere.  Excellent work there boys, just excellent.  Can't say we didn't listen to that one perhaps more than we should have.

 

Which brings us to the one complaint you could have with this album.  ...And Don't Deliver Us From Evil is a fine blend of competing schemas.  The light and the hard, the heavy and the soft, the dark and the light, and Forgotten Tomb has made a great balance of these sensations throughout the album, including the vocals.  So expect some cleanliness, at times, but cleanliness that makes you want to cover yourself in the filth of your own blood, and we like that.  The only real complaint is a few of the tracks destroy, they completely destroy, including the other tracks around them.  You might find yourself skipping around after the first listen to capture the better moments again, and then again, and again.  First time through you take it all in, after that you focus on the goodies.  The title track is a great example of this, as well as "Let's Torture Each Other".  They have a quality that easily draws in your ear and can probably survive googol infinity listens, but sometimes to the detriment of the rest of the album.  This isn't to say that some of it is mediocre, it's far from it, it's just that sometimes certain moments outshine others very, very readily.  Like a sun to a light bulb.  But, for what that is worth, there's nothing really wrong with focusing in on a particular track or two, it just shows that Forgotten Tomb have sometimes outdone themselves and their own songs at the same time.  Either way, great, depressive music right here.

 

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Written by Stanley Stepanic

Forgotten Tomb: ...And Don't Deliver Us From Evil
Agonia Records
4 / 5