Root – Zjeveni
I finally got my
greasy hands on this! Loyal readers will know of my affinity for Eastern
European metal, and especially Root, and this, my fellow fans, is the first
satanic battle cries that emerged from Root, all the way back in 1990!
Distributed as ”The Revelation” in '91 the original album is now finally
reissued on Western ground, and is a must-have for any diehard follower of the
founders of Czech black metal.
Diehard , yes, because although this is a great album, it probably wouldn't
catch the attention of anyone not already familiar with the band. On the other
hand: If you liked more recent publications, like ”Madness of the Grave” and
”Daemon Viam Invenient” this is indeed a very interesting album, as it shows
even more of Root's development and variety.
Zjeveni was recorded under severely bad circumstances, and on really crappy
gear, and is in fact a smattering of demo-stuff recorded while communist
oppression did everything to shut the band up. Thus every bad bit of recording,
every mistake that weren't remade, is a ”fuck you” in the face of
totalitarianism, and how many albums can boast a story like that?
Musically this sounds like Root – which is to say, early progressive black metal
– but with far more Venom'ish sound and a little less Bathory'an power. The
guitars are messy, the drums crude, and the lyrics of Big Boss doesn't really
give me goosebumps. But, as said before, this is more a collectors item than
anything else, and it deserves a spin now and then.
Root – The Temple
of the Underground
Upon listening to the dirty sound and biker brutality of Zjeveni, one is
surprised to enter the atmospheric halls of Root's ”The Temple of the
Underground”. The album is another reissue from the early 90's, but far more
melodic. As an early example of Root's love of concept albums, this is pretty
much what an operetta would sound like, if Satan wrote it.
In a mind-boggling mix of glories hymns, symphonic grawls, blast beats and the
trademark garage-guitar, Root takes the listeners on a journey both musical and
narrative. From good old grim black to hard rock ballads, we travel through Hell
This is the kind of album you put on, when you want to do nothing but lie down
with your eyes closed, and the volume on max. This is more a psychedelic metal-trip
than anything else.