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Moribundo : Raz Amarga

While there is no question that Moribundo have some serious chops, their lack of vision prevents them from delivering something truly great.

Newcomers Moribundo, after having been together for three years, have finally arrived with their debut album 'Raiz Amarga' and deliver an album that straddles Death metal and Doom metal. Lemme just clarify that a bit since I'm sure many of you are wondering why I just didn't say Doom/Death metal but the main issue I have with this album is that sometimes I get the feeling that the band doesn't know if they want to play Doom metal or Death metal. It's not exactly bad either way but I feel like a bit more work with blending the genres together would have really helped this. Lets get started!

First off the album starts off extremely well with some absolutely crushing guitar sounds before eventually moving to a whispered acoustic introduction. This is when things get a bit messy, for example, as soon as the more Death metal part comes in it's almost a constant barrage of vocal parts that kind of undermine the nice melodies underneath. That, and the drummer can play and play damn well and he damn well wants you to know that! Normally one or the other isn't that big of a deal but when combined with each other it's a bit much. It just comes across as a band that would feel a bit more comfortable in playing just straight modern Death metal rather than Doom metal. 'Antitesis' fares much better with having a far more concise idea of what it wants to be by giving us some a break with the vocals and giving us some good Doom. But the cramming quickly starts again with the rest of the album. Which is unfortunate since there is some really legitimate playing and sections here that need a bit more room to breathe. Just a touch more work and objectivity with the vocals and the songs would have been improved considerably.

Let's talk about the production a bit, because I think a big reason why I get the Death metal vibe with Doom parts lies with the production. Everything sounds extremely modern. Like if you've heard any new Death metal in the last 10 years you know exactly what everything sounds like down to the drums. The only real difference is the addition of keys and some chorus sounds. These songs would REALLY benefit with a better sound (or even removing them in spots) for these sections, since it adds a little too much cheese and otherwise can distract from some really good parts. For example, in 'Antitesis' the guitars are doing some good work during the second half in bringing that Doom sound in but the constant chorus effect behind them becomes distracting. That and everything is really compressed so by the end you're kinda hoping for a bit more breathing room as far as the fatigue in your ears go. Ear fatigue is real, people! And modern Death metal and its productions are the biggest offender.

I hesitate to really call this Doom/Death metal but rather a technical Death band that's trying to be epic with a few Doom ideas. There are just so many examples of the band cramming a ton of technical drums fills, chorus ideas, and vocals into a single part where any semblance of actual Doom gets sucked out and is replaced by a more modern tech Death incarnation.There's nothing inherently wrong with this but it just screams a lack of overall vision. Letting the tracks breathe rather than cramming would really benefit Moribundo, as there is no question there is a ton of talent within, but seeings how there is only one guy playing the instruments it comes off as a solo album to show off rather than a thought out whole. The potential is there though, and I truly hope Moribundo's vision clarifies into something that will really destroy.

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Reviewer's rating: 6/10


Tracklist :
1. Vida
2. Antitesis
3. Suicidio Ilustrado
4. Luz

Duration : Approx. 36 minutes

Visit the Moribundo bandpage.

Reviewed on 2018-01-14 by Eli Elliott
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