T.O.M.B., aka Total Occultic Mechanical Blasphemy, adds to their expansive discography with their sixth full-length release, Thin The Veil. They are labeled as avant-garde black metal that includes a mix of styles including noise, industrial and doom. This album oozes atmosphere like blood from a freshly opened wound, and it cements T.O.M.B. even more as a top innovator in modern day black metal.
The album rips open with ‘No Return’. It is really a wall of sound that grabs your attention, but it is very much a very straightforward black metal track. The only notable thing for that track is the drums. They are skillfully provided by MAYHEM’s own Hellhammer, and he is present the rest of the album. I believe this track is made to ease you into the album before the more eclectic/experimental sections come in. Speaking of which, the next tracks, ‘Where The Wretched Lurk’, ‘Pestilence’ and ‘Invocation’, really fill out the scope of this album. It moves into ghastly soundscapes, with raspy screams and growls. There are primal, tom-heavy drumbeats with minimal guitar to fill in any gaps. The first half of the album really rounds out with its namesake track, ‘Thin The Veil’. It is up there for my top track for this Thin The Veil.
The second half comes in with another very focused but punishing track, ’Decapitation Of The Gods’. This, much like the first track, seems like a good palette cleanser to set you up for the rest of the album, but I definitely find this track to be more enjoyable and varied than the opener. The next couple tracks, ‘Lunar Reckoning’ and ‘Escape From Phlegethon’, keep with the theme of the album, but don’t really offer anything new and can sort of blend together.
The album wraps up with, ‘License To Depart’, ‘Pure Noise Necromancy’ and ‘Hellmouth’. This ending explores more experimental and noise elements with a shocking blast of static to start ‘License To Depart’. It was grating at first, but it smoothed out after a couple listens. ‘Pure Noise Necromancy’ really seems like a song created for a live show, and I enjoyed the Hell out of it. ‘Hellmouth’, ended up being my favorite track of the album and really brought everything together for haunting conclusion.
This is an impressive album. Almost every track was key to making this album an enjoyable listening experience, and it definitely deserves a listen or two. I would recommend this album for fans of MAYHEM, DEATHSPELL OMEGA, PORTAL, or GNAW THEIR TONGUES.
Review By: Robert Atkinson
Thin The Veil
Dark Essence Records
5.5 / 6