To say that the new EP from Teratism is killer is an insult.

To call ‘La Bas’ “epic” only begins to describe what is heard…

When the package arrived unannounced, I had no idea that what I was receiving was a mere promo. When feasting my eyes upon the Mark Riddick drawn cover, I knew what I held in my hands. Did the mighty Teratism send me an actual 12″ splatter vinyl MLP, complete with lyric insert book, poster and CD copy as a promo?! Any bands emailing me a link to download their ‘almost-finished’ album via mediafire.com will have a hard time staying off of my shit list from this point forward, mark my words.

With the opening track, ‘Gospel of the Heliophobe’, Teratism set the mood quickly, erupting into a series of violent progressions that immediately appeal to my jaded ears. This sound is tense, stretched and ready to explode at any given moment. A slower, well-arranged and melodic middle section gives the six minute track some breathing room before closing out with an even more oppressive series of harmonies and rhythmic patterns.

‘Thy Swill Be Dung’ brings more of a driving, double bass feel to the fold, syncing up nicely with the guitar and voice arrangement. Again, the middle / end of the song is rounded out and balanced with a more melodic, slower tempo movement. Somewhat predictable but thoroughly deviant in all aspects of performance and presentation.

If I had to pic a favorite track, I would choose the third, ‘Shadows Flee The Burning Sons of Light’. My ear likes the play between the guitar patterns, the changing feel of the drum rhythms. For me, the song moves more naturally than the others and the ever-present slow ending really stands out in contrast to the other tracks.

I find myself trying much too hard to enjoy the album closer, a cover of Black Widow’s ‘Come to the Sabbat’. I appreciate Teratism doing something different and giving us a version of song that has stark differences from black metal but I don’t feel this songs lends itself well to the extreme music genre. I am not a fan of the original song either, for that fact, but do think it was well done for its genre and time period. The mere mention of ‘Satan’ in a song is not a qualifier for black metal, in my opinion. Can you imagine the disaster if Pat Boone recorded Black Sabbath’s ‘After Forever’? Some things don’t work, and for me, this didn’t.

When I listen to songs such as these, I am reminded how I need to spend more time behind my own drum kit. Inspired would be a choice word to describe my reaction. Whatever Teratism does,those devoted to honest and unwavering black metal best heed. These four overtures of ritual darkness that make up ‘La Bas’ offer a sacrifice to satisfy even the most demanding of daemons.

And no, the embedded music player at the top is from a 7″ split with Morbus 666. Teratism is staying busy recently…pay attention!