Draghkar – The Endless Howling Abyss

Firstly if I’d seen Draghkar EP "The Endless Howling Abyss" in a shop I would have bought it on the strength of their logo which is one of the best I’ve seen in some time; it is one of those that is not quite what it seems when you first look at it, a swirling greyscale of scribbled lines to create a serial killing scrawl but on close inspection it is so much more which I will leave you to check out. With a demo and a couple of split releases out this US death metal act releases their first EP of typically old school death metal but like their logo it is so much more than that too.

'Traversing The Abyss' opens the EP with a sludgy doom death riddled riff that boasts bitumen like pace encrusted with a slow double bass that thickens the sound as the song gathers momentum incrementally towards a riff that has a crust like posture. The bursts in pace are abrupt creating an Autopsy like aura as the song veers the riffing into a more melodic like ethos with the vocals lying low in the mix slithering with a gut churning pitch which leaves only the bass which resolves itself into the mix by integrating with the riffing. 'Swallowed By The Dark' is faster, chaotic and driven by the punishing drum work which has an organic sound which if I criticised I would have preferred to be louder or at least more prominent in the mix but that is just personal preference. The momentary switch in riff tone is awesome increasing the tension in the track brilliantly as it careers along at break neck speed without resorting to blasting.

The discordant riff that starts 'Eternal Disintegration (Of The Body And Of The Mind)' is disturbing, creating an unearthly atmosphere before the song injects half blasted bedlam with constantly morphing tempo shifts that leaves only 'Fading Into Emptiness' to end the EP in fine crusty style. That dissonant riffing style continues, producing a catchy riff that nestles in a flood of double kick initially. The sporadic speed incursions are excellent but it is that catchy riff that will scar your brain as will the riff break and subsequent blasting foray that borders maniacal in places without losing control I might add. The weird groaning clean vocal adds that extra spice to their music yet again as Draghkar have sculpted a superb release of death metal grotesquery.


1. Traversing The Abyss
2. Swallowed By The Dark
3. Eternal Disintegration (Of The Body And Of The Mind)
4. Fading Into Emptiness