This black metal act from Louisiana continues to spread destruction and devastation. Barghest released their debut album back in 2011, unleashing an echoing shout of misanthropy and obliteration. After their self-titled album, the band put out a split EP with fellow black metal act, False, which also marked their first work for Gilead Media. So now the band carries on its path of annihilation, alongside their collaboration with Gilead, and let loose upon the poor earth the The Virtuous Purge. And it is a purging alright…
One of the strongest points of the band is their ability to put together great grooves and sickening speed. It fills as if they have no issue retaining their sense of groove even when the part starts to become lighting fast. And believe me; in this case they can get seriously fast. Take for instance the intro to “Our Last Night on Earth.” Barghest comes in with a doom/death vibe almost, getting all warmed up and ready for the assault. The blastbeats soon come through and the black metal leads are evil in its purest form. The full extent of the animosity of the band is something awe-inspiring.
From that point on the black metal assault takes over, as Barghest unleash the monumental riffs of “Agonizing Spiritual Descent,” alongside their deep (sort of guttural) vocals and the insane drumming. But, the band still finds space to unleash their mid tempo bits, which are even more insane than their fast parts.
The attack carries on, with the band unleashing a much heavier incantation, with “When the Cross Points to Hell,” with a stomach-turning chorus part that will be stuck in your head for a long time. And from then on, Barghest does not show any remorse and do not hold back. The black metal riffology of “Through Disease,” is sending waves of sickening horror your way, with the hatred of the band resonating through the ages. The ability of the band to come up with great riffs is insane, and all their malicious intents are revealed with the title track. It seems like the band has no breaks, and is set in producing songs of untainted extremity. And with “Spent Brass” the band strips things down to their very core, giving an excellent instant of old-school black metal, with venomous riffs and a more traditional black metal structure.
And all this starts to fade away as the band closes the album with “My Own Grave.” In a similar fashion as the opening track, the band throws some doom/death into their black metal. The slow tempo and the torturous riffs along with the slow progression of the track really make it a very intense moment and an interesting break from the fast onslaught that previously occurred. But of course Barghest cannot restrain themselves and unleash a blasting assault in the last few minutes of the track.
When it comes to aggressive black metal, Barghest do not disappoint. The band focuses on a simple recipe but their execution is mind blowing. The Virtuous Purge will not disappoint any fans of the genre.
8.0 / 10
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