SEKTARISM  Le Testament  CASSETTE   (Zanjeer Zani Production)   6.50

Somewhat modeled after the legendary French black metal collective LLN, the small n' obscure Les Apotres De l'Ignominie (or "Apostles of Ignominy") circle is made up of a triad of strange Satanic black metal bands that include Darvulia and Malhkebre alongside a shadowy doom metal band called Sektarism. I'm a big fan of all of these bands, but out of all of them, Sektarism is easily the most fucked-up sounding of the lot. A couple of years ago, I listed a Cd release from Sektarism called L'Offrande, which featured one long song of stumbling, shambling doom that was swept up in a murky basement atmosphere of drunken Satanic ritual and hateful ravings, with a really low-fi and noisy recording that was maybe a step or two above 4-track quality, and with so much rumbling feedback and dissonant guitar noise that I described that recording as a weird combination of blackened ritualistic doom in the vein of Trees and Bloody Panda, and the most destroyed, distorted moments of Fushitsusha's Pathetique as filtered through the rotting skull-meat of a French opium addict. Sounds pretty great, right? That Ep won me over immediately, but it wasn't until just a few weeks ago that I came upon the other two releases that Sektarism had put out in the wake of L'Offrande. Only released on cassette by the equally mysterious new imprint Zanjeer Zani Production, the professionally assembled and printed Le Testament and Hosanna Sathana tapes just came out last year (2011), and each follows the same route as the first Ep: a long, sprawling blackened garage-doom jam that wanders drunkenly through an extremely low-fi haze of extreme misanthropic hatred, narcotics, noisy primitive doom, and shrieking Satanic flesh-lust. If you are one of the few that have already fallen under the black spell of Sektarism's shambling, seemingly improvised sludge, these more recent recordings are essential.

The third of the Sektarism tapes, Le Testament meanders through it's black-lit delirium for almost twenty minutes, the music loose and probably mostly improvised, the sound filthy and covered in cobwebs, carrying on with more of their gnarled, raw doom metal that wanders off into noisy jamming, shapeless dirges and bizarre behavior throughout the whole song. The drooling vocals of front man Eklezjas'Tik Berzerk offer up endless Satanic devotion in an incoherent stream of profanities and vileness delivered in French, and the performance is cloaked in a drugged, occult atmosphere with such a garage-level production that it feels as if you are listening to something much older than this actually is. Sektarism stumbles through sparsely arranged dirges and heavy spacious riffs that crawl over Shamaanik B.'s messy drumming, the band frequently staggering to a sudden halt and abruptly shifting into another riff, or collapsing into a long stretch of feedback and amp noise. Wiry blackened guitar leads appear over the chugging doom riffs, and the winding bass slithers across pounding tribal rhythms and sheets of polluted feedback, and by the end of "Le Testament", the band wanders off into a din of scraped guitar strings blanketed in effects, gargling vocal noises, and droning feedback. There's a few precedents for the kind of low-fi black doom that Sektarism practices - it has kind of the same garagey, ramshackle feel as old Upsidedown Cross, Finnish improv-doom metallers Night Must Fall, Persistence In Mourning's noisy sludge, and the murky black mess of Alkerdeel - but the stain of demented French black metal clings to this foul music, becoming a form of blighted metal all its own...

Limited to ninety-nine copies.