FOSCOR “The Smile Of The Sad Ones”
(Temple Of Darkness Records)

Regarding the silence around Shemhamphorash – the band of Wilhkiem (g) and Nechrist (d) - FOSCOR are by far the most potent and vicious Black Metal band from Spanish shores. “The Smile Of The Sad Ones” celebrates the return of Catalan darkness an evil. Sinister lead guitars, haunting atmospheres and  relentless brutality evoke the ancient ones and bring back the glory of early 90s Black Metal without cheap necro sounds and compositional wastelands.

The presence of Katatonia, which they covered for the tribute album “December Songs”, is evident in the hidden beauty of some melodic undertones, but there is much more to detect. For example the very dominant bass as an instrument that sometimes reminds of Necromantias arrangements. The avantgarde approach in some vocal lines (‘The Shame And The Spectre’, ‘Gebre’) or the slight samples in ‘L’Ombra de L’Adicció’. 

This second album is in no ways a polished mainstream statement, but a spiritual journey. This is just supported by the use of the native tongue in half of the lyrics. Without concrete folk ambitions – at least no medieval instruments are used - FOSCOR are still an ambassador of their cultural heritage, they are neither to be confused with the Scandinavian legends nor the Pagan hordes from Eastern Europe or the blast commandos from the American continent. That’s maybe the biggest compliment: Individuality as a mediator between the old school and new (un) orthodox Black Metal in the vein of Deathspell Omega and others. Narrow is the path to darkness…(BTJ)  

Points: 12 / 15