With a certain familiarity to old-school Bethlehem, today we have Swiss outfit Cold Cell and their powerful sophomore release “Lowlife”. Featuring a very dark and sinister sound that mixes Black Metal elements with more restrained melodic passages and some sprinkles of ambient elements, this release is quite obscure and enjoyable. Clocking in at 53 minutes, this is one release that breaks the mold and nicely sets itself apart from your cookie-cutter BM albums.
Opening with a atmospheric intro, the band’s sinister sound first creeps on you with the Black’n’roll-ish opening of “Lifestyle Lunacy”. In this very moody track we get to hear the band’s full aural spectrum with a very rich and diverse piece. Other tracks feature brilliant melodic/atmospheric passages like “Scum Eradication” and “Dogma”. With the individual named S providing the vocals, we are reminded of the deranged style of Rainer Landfermann in Bethlehem’s “Dictius Te Necare”, but with enough restraint and focus to not draw all the attention to them.
The band’s strength in “Lowlife” is the excellent consistency they provide through the release. All songs are quite diverse and engaging, allowing their Black Metal followers to go ape shit with the faster sections, while pleasing us fans of the bizarre and unconventional with their dark atmosphere and diverse vocal styles. Pummeling through excellent tracks like “Way to Prevail” and the twisted “Needle’s Asylum”, the band reminds us of a heavier version of Secrets of the Moon.
In terms of Cold Cell’s darker side, “Proliferation” is a clear example of those songs featuring somber passages that create a very unique and bleak atmosphere. As a whole, “Lowlife” is a very interesting and unconventional release that features a bit of everything for fans of the diverse and twisted and the occasional listener of Black Metal music. If you like your music to be different and heavy at the same time, Cold Cell has managed to produce quite a unique release that is excellently crafted and written, so be sure to pick up a copy of this album.
|Band: Cold Cell
Label: Avantgarde Music
Release: May 25th, 2015
Genre: Black/Dark Metal