Music Review-Black September-The Forbidden Gates Beyond

1. The Forbidden Gates Beyond 6:16
2. Creation of Chaos 4:32
3. Hallow of Decay 1:17
4. Tyrants 5:41
5. Tombs 3:55
6. The Absence of Life & Death 6:14
7. Unleashed 7:09

J.M. – Vocals
C.M. – Guitars
J.M. – Guitars
A.B. – Bass
T.N. – Drums

History-Formed in 2006 from Chris McMorrow and lead singer Jen McMorrow they got their start in Chicago. Released a few eps and been compared to bands as diverse as Walls of Jericho and Bolt Thrower. They have expanded their sound in the last few years to get to this release, which seems very doom and death metal inspired.

Review-This cd is fucking insane. The first thing that really got my attention is the audio sound, the music hits you with this bass driven sound and a low end guitar sound, that really compliment the insane tempo the drummer keeps. And then, Jen’s vocals which seem like the icing on a death metal cake. All these elements make The Forbidden Gates Beyond a very intense record that will get your attention almost immediately with its fury and the different directions each song goes thru. The faster and harder songs will hammer you and leave you helpless with its crushing presence. This cd is just straight up no frills death and doom metal. The title tracks sets a good pace for this cd with its hastened pace and just sheer intensity, then slows down into some atmospheric sound scape, and then hammer you back down again. Another favorite of mine is Tyrants, this song is clearly a change of pace for them, it starts off with the fury as the other tracks but then seems to try and venture out into more power metal fields, before it ends strong. This direction for me with Jen’s vocals fit this song so perfectly.

But, I think this is a band that is in search of an identity and it shows throughout this cd. Songs like Creation of Chaos try to be modern sounding death metal and capture its fury and energy, and it just seems like the band feels out of place. Now, I am not attacking the band as a whole, I think this cd is like a litmus paper into all the directions of music they are into and maybe see what they are comfortable with? The guitars on each song are pounding, riff after riff of just pure metal head banging joy but it just seemed like it was missing something-direction. This cd is not a bad cd, and I think they all are amazing musicians and an amazing lead singer, but this cd just seemed like a jam session and not a full cd.

While this was a damn good jam session, it could have been so much more. I think the talent is there, this band just needs direction, maybe a style of their own so they can base a cd around it. This cd just sounded like this is a band who just needs a vocal fan base and maybe get some tours under their belt, and open for decent sized crowds and see what works and what does not work, then make a cd from there. All in all, this is like a work in progress. And some songs on this cd are really good, hell the majority of this cd is good but I just think they could do so much better than good. If you like female death metal/doom metal this was not a bad cd to start with. It is better than most other death metal bands male or female led.

7.5 out of 10