In 2003, the USBM horde known as Lightning Swords of Death made a pact that birthed the beginnings of their unholy mission. It was in that blood oath that Autarch, Roskva, Menno and Vega collectively vowed to apply the occult sciences to their electrified and unholy assault on the senses. Since their fateful formation in the decadent metropolis of Los Angeles, California, the band has maintained a relatively strong DIY approach in the launch of their grim assault on the masses. To this date, the band has managed to get their work featured on video games (Undead Knights) and movies (the 2009 remake of The Stepfather). They unapologetically planted their blazing banner of thrashing fury upon their piece of the black metal map with the release of their 2007 debut full-length, The Golden Plague, before signing on with Metal Blade Records last year.

Recorded in Corona, California at Trench Studios with guitarist Roskva handling production duties, the band’s second full-length, The Extra Dimensional Wound (Metal Blade), takes the reigns in a thrash-infected fashion, with a sound that makes one wonder if a band like Lightning Swords of Death could realistically spawn from a place so obsessed with the world of superficial, plastic glamour and celebrity like Los Angeles. The record’s first neck-snapping excursion of ferocity is also the title track, a grand introduction to what lies ahead in the band’s display of their madness and easily a highpoint of the eight tracks found here. “Nihilistic Stench” comes on like an iron-knuckled punch in the face, leading us all into gory battle via pummeling percussion and a foaming at the mouth, barking vocal performance by Autarch. At the record’s mid-point, “Zwartgallig” grants the listener a moment to catch a breath during an intermission of eerie, mellow guitar and ambient textures before “Damnation Pentastrike” reinstates the war declaration. “Venter of the Black Beast” slows the madness down a few notches throughout most of its duration, still maintaining control of the task at hand: mandatory, grueling insanity. Plodding along at just under six minutes, it throws the listener to the wolf that is “Vorticating Into Scars”, a beastly whirlwind of riffs and percussive thunder that shows the band’s total disinterest in mercy for the wounded. The closer, “Paths To Chaos” lives up to its name, in that, while it is seconds away from the twelve-minute mark, leaves the listener questioning their own chance of getting out alive. It is only the last several seconds of the album that they are allowed time to evaluate the horror they’ve just experienced, and with any luck lived to tell the glorious tale.

While the sound quality and mix (such as maybe an increase in the presence of bass guitar) of The Extra Dimensional Wound occasionally shows room for improvement, it is otherwise a solid black metal effort. Rest assured, whoever doubts the band and their knowledge of the art of laying waste to the weak should most definitely take notice. With The Extra Dimensional Wound, the Lightning Swords of Death have revealed an even sharper edge in their arsenal…and they are prepared to run the enemy through!

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