I can’t deny the fact that I was waiting for Doomraiser after an album like Mountains Of Madness, an absolutely successful work given its level of quality, but compared to which you could not help but notice how the wild and instinctive charge, that the Roman band had poured into the first two albums, had been partially sacrificed to the benefit of a more psychedelic and progressive vein. With Reverse, Doomraiser take at the same time a step back and a step forward in the reinterpretation of their sound: the primordial doom comes back again to show its muscles in the course of the album, even if not in the massive measure of Lords Of Mercy and Erasing The Remembrance and, at the same time, the psychedelic impulses are shaded in favor of a more classically heavy mark; the result is a work with multifaceted traits, with which the combo from Rome takes us for a walk in time going to lap the innermost depths of an oxyanic metal, evocative and with a huge impact. The six songs are different but equally complementary and ours do not give up to make their own all the stylistic nuances that may gravitate around the doom base of their sound: the line-up, revolutionized on the occasion of the previous album with the replacement of both guitarists, now appears a perfect and oiled machine in which the six-stringed instrument stands as a protagonist, not only in building a compact wall of sound but also in embroidering solos of great taste and intensity. The lion’s share is played, once again, by a vocalist with a great personality like Nicola Rossi, more and more at ease in modulating the vocal registers, perfectly supporting the changes made to the sound from time to time by his worthy companions; the icing that makes the cake even more delicious is the imposition of hands on the work by a production guru like Billy Anderson who, thanks to his perfect knowledge of the subject, helps to enhance the work of Doomraiser, letting the album maintain equally intact its impetuous charge. Reverse unfolds on more than fifty minutes spread more or less equally over six tracks, each of which is capable of being remembered both for the catchy rhythms, although compressed into a skeleton of traditionally doom matrix (the initial trio Addiction, Mirror Of Pain, Ascension: 6 To 7), both for the presence of riffs so rocky to put at risk the integrity of the speakers (Apophis), and still finding those lysergic impulses that, on this occasion, feed the sound instead of engulfing it (the final In Winter and Dio Inverso). A special mention, even in a tracklist of rare compactness and quality, deserves a track like Ascension: 6 To 7, in which Doomraiser vent their influences giving life to what, as far as I’m concerned, is absolutely one of the peaks of their already excellent production. The Roman band, with this latest effort, takes firmly in hand the reins of the Italian doom: hard to think today to do better moving near the path traced by Black Sabbath, Saint Vitus, Candlemass and company. The intense live activity in all these years has made the quintet of the capital a cohesive and unassailable reality and this latest album has the characteristics to agree with those who prefer the sound more dark and funereal (like me), both those who appreciate the more orthodox aspect of the genre, and finally those who do not disdain to let go lulled in the intoxication of lysergic vapors that the sound continues to emanate in a conspicuous manner. The disc of consecration? Maybe, surely it’s the most complete and mature one within a discography that already before occupied a prominent place within the metal scene: let’s rather say that Doomraiser has been for several years now one of the points of reference for all doom fans and that the quality of a work like Reverse can surprise only those who (guiltily) had never heard of them before.
2015 – BloodRock Records