Let’s welcome VERMIS into the world of Death Metal. Since “Liturgy Of The Damned” is their first full length release I find it appropriate to do so. VERMIS was founded in 2004 by ex-members of OBSIDIAN GATE and KHAOSICK, of those two bands I’ve only heard OBSIDIAN GATE previously. I don’t remember exactly what kind of Extreme Metal OBSIDIAN GATE performed but I’m sure it wasn’t Death Metal in the vein of MORBID ANGEL and HATE ETERNAL. I feel to mention that HATE ETERNAL is the band that VERMIS sounds most alike.
The biggest difference between HATE ETERNAL and VERMIS is the country which they come from. VERMIS is yet another band from Germany playing music of the more extreme kind. The number of German bands that performs Extreme Metal (that includes Thrash Metal) must be close to a million. Up to this date I think that there’s more quantity than quality in the German Extreme Metal scene, but a band like VERMIS does its best to add some quality to the scene. I would like to add that I’m far from an all knower and that there probably exist some killer bands in the scene which I haven’t treated my ears to yet.
For those unfamiliar with the music of HATE ETERNAL I assume it would be fair to describe the music a bit more specific. What you’ll find on “Liturgy Of The Annihilated” is Death Metal on full speed. Most of the record is played in blast modus, not a record for fans of Old School Death Metal in other words. The record starts out with one of those forgettable Death Metal intros. After the intro has finished its lifespan we are treated with non compromising Death Metal. There are only two songs (not counting the intro as a song) that doesn’t use blast beat as its main theme, those two songs are “Worldend Catharsis” and “Bleeding Earth. “Worldend Catharsis” is my favourite song of the album, while “Bleeding Earth” is a short instrumental. The rest of the songs follow the same recipe, fast blasting with the occasional break downs into heavy riffing.
When playing Death Metal of the kind that VERMIS performs you have to know how to handle your instrument. The members of VERMIS are skilled musicians, better musicians than songwriters. I feel that this is the standard of Death Metal today, hordes of skilled musicians but far less great songwriters. The music of VERMIS is satisfying as long as the record is playing but once it is over I have problems remembering any particular songs. Let me use BOLT THROWER as an example. BOLT THROWER knows how to write songs that sticks to your mind, songs that you remember. If you don’t remember the chorus of “Those Once Loyal” after it’s finished you should check yourself for Alzheimer.
The bottom line here is that VERMIS is a good band in a crowded scene. I have no problems recommending it to fans of HATE ETERNAL and such bands; satisfying, but not extraordinary. (Online January 29, 2006)