This time I'm reviewing the newest full-length of the Malaysian group Neftaraka, which was founded already in '96. I didn't know the band before listening to the album and I'm not at all familiar with the Malaysian black metal-scene, so I was excited to give it a spin.
The album starts with the atmospheric intro "Rituale," but right after it the starts beating the listeners face with cold, yet tradition-informed black metal. There's a nice amount of variation in the comping, the band isn't all about making a loud blasting racket, and they manage to keep their stuff together both in the faster and slower songs.
I think the sounds are good and clear. The guitar and bass aren't that descant-y, so I retained my hearing despite listening to the album. The riffs are ok-quality sawing, although I would've wanted more originality from them.
The vocals are of the basic croaking type, distantly reminding me of Xasthur. The shrieker is good at his craft for sure, but I think some added effects could've been left out. Echoing and such are being used quite frequently here after all. Even though the vocals are decent, more attention should be paid to their clarity and articulation.
As a summary, I would've wanted the record to have more dark moods. The album has a somewhat performance-based taste, and this image could've been broken with, for example, short intros or interludes. I don't know how this release stands out in the crowded field of black metal, but if you enjoy good-sounding quality black metal, I recommend you to check out this album!