The devil is in the detail. And in the name, too. Because, Nomen est Omen, as the saying goes.
So, when Fvneral Fvkk released their newest album Carnal Confessions in September 2019, it got that proverbial cold shoulder. Because – let’s face it – the name the band chose for themselves really does not incite any fervor to write that review.
In other words, whenever a moniker speaks of juvenile bad taste to say the least, the crew over here puts those records on the backburner. There is only so much marketing and legal can explain, you know.
It will thus become a record to be looked at later, and most likely never, to be more precise. Because – hey – what quality would (and can) you really expect from a wrapper like that, right?
To my surprise, the background chatter around Carnal Confessions grew ever more positive and intense over the weeks after its release. So – finally – the RMR deck crew received word from the supreme leader to unearth the piece. So that they might find out what this confession is all about.
Because, you see, we got hints that delicious blasphemies and forbidden subjects would be afoot. And don’t we relish those on this blog? Perhaps legal can justify the appearance of this record on this webzine after all.
First and foremost, Carnal Confessions dispenses Doom Metal of the first order, quite in the vein of King Goat, with a trifle Khemmis mixed in. Undercurrents of Paradise Lost with Nick Holmes at the helm, with a few echoes of the seriously defunct Woods of Ypres. And a few very slight hints of Thrawsunblat’s 2016 offering. Which – come to think of it – is the latter’s crew all over again – with a mostly different style. Right.
You’ll find a tasty hotpot of cathedral clear voice offerings that hint at the depravity of robed doughy white men. Those decked out in garish colors and bizarre headwear, chanting in vast empty buildings filled with scented smoke. With nuns as their willing complices in crime that all too often were never found out. That Carnal Confessions addresses a somewhat uneasy truth that many would like to bury deep down in those dreaded vaults just adds to its spicy allure.
Fvneral Fvkk‘s soaring sound immediately spreads its mighty wings. With Cantor Cinaedicus‘s hyper-precise chants setting the course to something at times so Paradise Lost, I sometimes had to verify on whose territory we really are on. But – in essence – this solely means that a cool piece of Doom Metal is afoot, not some copycat nonsense. In a way, Ghost – in their ghastly papal splendor – should probably sport a sound like that. But hey, they ain’t.
But let’s not forget the riffs and solos. Decanus Obscaenus and his mean guitar provide one of the major pillars of this house of doom. And without that, the lyrics would just be empty chanting. Always present, often solemn and slow-marching when it must and sometimes soaring. But always right on topic, to supplement the lyrics with its dreary, tear-drenched sound. With the rare solo here and there, as in The Hallowed Leech, few and far between as they may be.
And for once, even the intro – though blissfully short – really talked to me. But it is only when Carnal Confessions lets loose with its meaty airs on Chapel of Abuse that things really get to tasty territory. Right after Decanus Obscaenus unleashes his low tempo stately riffs and sadly stretched melodies. Truly, this is one of these records that will put that hook into your mortal flesh. With tracks that will make you come back for seconds.
Trust me on that one.
If anything, the next two tracks – A Shadow In The Dormitory and Alone With The Cross – continue to hit as hard as the second track did. And those all fetched a straight 10/10 each. And I must confess that Carnal Confessions roared out of our might music machine a few times too many, it is that good. Not that the band would object, of course.
Epic traditional doom metal the German Fvneral Fvkk threatened us with, and this is exactly what they delivered. Nothing more, nothing less. An artful selection of Doom Metal tracks the way they are meant to exist. With lyrics that match the theme, sent to us by a band not scared of controversy.
And we salute that.
Carnal Confessions truly lives in that august space Khemmis, King Goat, Pallbearer, Crypt Sermon, Paradise Lost, and their ilk already occupy. Maybe they didn’t surpass their brethren quite yet. But if they manage to continue down that road of doom, they will surely succeed.
This is a band with true potential. And the RMR lookout at the masthead is already searching for that sophomore full-length record that is sure to reach our shores. One day, soon.
Ed’s note: The record made it onto the 2019 Top 10 records. Congrats!