Rage Nucléaire – Unrelenting Fucking Hatred (Season of Mist, 2012)

SUA 027-Rage_NucleaireThe last time we heard from Lord Worm was on Cryptopsy’s rather lackluster 2005 album Once Was Not, and as a result of his absence, the scene has been a much less interesting place.  So what does the most deranged-sounding vocalist in death metal do to signal his return from a seven year silence?  Start a grim and twisted black metal band, that’s what!  And so it is that Herr Worm is back to mangling his vocal cords with new outfit Rage Nucléaire, a band that has allegedly been festering since 2000 but is only now seeing the recorded light of day with their Season of Mist-backed debut Unrelenting Fucking Hatred.

Coming off like Anaal Nathrakh’s uglier, malfunctioning cyber-cousin, Rage Nucléaire play more-raw-than-a-motherfucker black metal caked with a thick layer of corrosive industrial scuzz.  Seriously, the band sounds like those Motörhead-playing robots discovered Transilvanian Hunger, subsequently going apeshit and viciously killing their human masters as a result.  Drummer Fredrik Widigs does an excellent job of impersonating a drum machine, while the rest of the band plays with an equal level of cold, merciless precision submerged in digital filth.

Lord Worm’s vocal performance is, as expected, off the fucking hook.  Those looking for a repeat of his classic Cryptopsy work will be surprised to find some very different stylings here, but they are no less bizarre and terrifying.  Worm screams, shrieks and gurgles like a demon choking on its own blood and vomit; it sounds totally inhuman and totally awesome.  Normally, vocals are the the element of a piece of music that people can latch onto, even in extreme music, but Worm’s possessed throat contortions only serve to make Unrelenting Fucking Hatred that much more repellent and alienating (I of course mean that in the best way possible).

Although the album is about as abrasive as it gets, there are hints of melody lurking beneath the bludgeoning nastiness, with some subtle synths lending the proceedings an air of blackened grandeur.  For the most part the glorious monochrome works well for Rage Nucléaire, but Unrelenting Fucking Hatred does tend to get a bit monotonous over the course of its fifty-plus minute run-time because of it.  That’s a minor gripe when one considers this is the quartet’s first proper recording, and one can’t blame a band that’s been in development for twelve years for wanting to hit you with everything they’ve got.

Overall, Unrelenting Fucking Hatred is an extremely promising debut, and it’s great to hear Lord Worm once again weaving tales of total sickness (personal favorite: “Hunt with Murderworms, Sculpt with Flies”).  While I do think the band needs to work on bringing more dynamics and variation into their assault, I still find myself enjoying the hell out of what is surely one of the most gnarly and caustic black metal albums to be released by a “big” metal label in quite some time.  Rage Nucléaire is a band to keep an eye on, and with Worm at the helm you know they’re only going to get more evil and perverse from here.

http://www.season-of-mist.com/bands/rage-nucleaire

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