One-man black metal projects certainly have become overabundant in the past couple of years. Im not exactly sure what brought on their increased presence in music, but nevertheless, their popularity has grown exponentially in recent years.
Xasthur, which is the project of Malefic, has been releasing material under this moniker since 1995. Defective Epitaph is his sixth full-length release and the first to not feature a drum machine, rather opting for acoustic drumming - something that helps evoke a more somber mood. These twelve songs blur the line between classic black metal and atmospheric drone, oftentimes leaning more towards the latter, but also defying classification.
Since the lyrics of this album have been withheld, its hard to guess what Malefic is screaming about, but the titles of the songs should clue you into his feelings: Purgatory Spiral, Funerals Drenched in Apathy, and A Memorial to the Waste of Life.
Im not a huge connoisseur of black metal, but I definitely find Defective Epitaph to be a dark, depressing, and scathing metal album, one certainly worth listening to. I would liken Malefic to the Justin Broadrick of black metal: prolific and oftentimes unclassifiable.
7.0 / 10
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