Review: Witch Vomit ‘Funeral Sanctum’

There has been a lot of anticipation and noise surrounding the third album from Portland’s Witch Vomit. Their previous two releases, A Scream From The Tomb Below and Buried Deep In A Bottomless Grave, elevated them to their current lofty position as one of America’s most potent and direct sources of expertly crafted cacophonous carnage in the death metal scene.

Witch Vomit 'Funeral Sanctum' Artwork
Witch Vomit ‘Funeral Sanctum’ Artwork

Prior to its release, they teased us with the release of two songs from the album; Blood Of Abomination and Black Wings Of Desolation which have clearly proven that the quartet, led by vocalist and guitarist Tempter, are not messing about. Their trademark brutal sound is weaved across the ten tracks like a harsh bleak wind blowing directly into your face that gets stronger and fiercer with each listen.

You are almost lulled into a false sense of security with the opening instrumental intro Dying Embers before the explosion begins with Endless Fall hitting you like a roundhouse from Bruce Lee. It’s angry, aggressive and relentless, yet also has some catchy hooks that will leave you wanting more, which comes up next with the impressive Blood Of Abomination and the brilliance of Serpentine Shadows which seems to have a bit of everything in it, slow, dark brooding guitars, spine chilling riffs and all with the presence of an evil DNA spread throughout the song.

It’s angry, aggressive and relentless…

With Decaying Angelic Flesh being led with a whirlwind of guitar noise from Tempter and CL, this song gives a fascinating upbeat melody whilst still remaining ferocious and takes you to a new level of hell. This is before Black Wings Of Desolation intensifies the high level assault and leaves you battered and bruised, before Dominion Of A Darkened Realm butchers your weakened senses further and leaves you begging for mercy, with another exquisite guitar solo midway through.

For an album just over thirty minutes long, it really does seem like a lot less as the time just flies by with the one-minute explosiveness of Endarkened Spirits being an absolute joy to listen to, I just wish it was bit longer, but that scream at the end feels like something out of a slasher film, all evil and cold. A slight breather befalls us next with Abject Silence (Interlude) which, to me, should have been the finale, as it disrupts the flow of the intense riffs and superb drumming from the filth, but with the title track, Funeral Sanctum, bringing up the rear, it reminds you of what an excellent album this truly is.

Overall, it’s a gore filled, fearless album full of hedonistically evil music which will please most death metal fans and proves that Witch Vomit have stepped up a level with a ceaseless riff storm to go alongside their trademark brutality.

Label: 20 Buck Spin
Band Links: Facebook | Bandcamp | Spotify | Instagram

Scribed by: Matthew Williams