ALBUM REVIEW: Monumentum Damnati – In The Tomb Of The Forgotten King

Formed in 2018 with members dotted around Eastern Europe MOMENTUM DAMNATI should be proud to release the fruit of their efforts In The Tomb Of A Forgotten King. Like many extreme metal bands, they have chosen to take on pseudonyms in order to protect their identities. Their members include Abhoth (Bass), Thanatos (Vocals), Shoggoth (Guitar), Rapsidis (Guitar), Atheme (Keyboards) and Nyarlathotep (Drums). Their Death/Doom sound perhaps does not reach the farthest extremes of either discipline but it blends superbly well and feels cohesive and enjoyable.

They open with The Shining, which much like the theme, its cinematic namesake relies on piercing tones to create a feeling of foreboding and unease except where that used a lengthier tone that uses piano in a sparing way. To me at least, it draws towards the sound of Mike Oldfield’s Tubular Bells and this causes it to create a good base on which to build its horror elements.

The rocking feel that had developed in The Shining carries through into the next track so well that I could almost believe that they were one and the same. On repeat listening to My Bloody JJ in isolation, it works equally well without the precursor. The solo featured within isn’t the most technical but it fits well and doesn’t overpower the mood of the song. They seem to have been very careful in picking the techniques they feature as the guitar work is always apt for the tone.

“I am he, there is no way out” starts the title track, over arpeggiated chords before the drums and the keyboards kick in. The entire track takes a very fantasy, action movie vibe. Even when the tempo picks up and the song becomes heavier it’s hard to separate this feeling from it due to the sweeping strings that follow you throughout the song. I’d actually recommend this song for fans of Symphonic and Folk Metal, it doesn’t meet all the major tropes of those genres but it meets enough that they would probably get a kick out of it.

We started on The Shining and we finish on The Exorcist, which doesn’t bear many similarities to its cinematic namesake. It’s curious to see how they end the strings and the piano that have so far been tying the album together. The strings are given their own time to fade out and resolve in a fitting way, the piano however is used very little throughout this song and as a result is able to be taken away without being too jarring for the listener.

To sum up, this is an excellent debut album and I really can’t wait to see what it is they do next. Abhoth’s music and lyrics always mesh in a satisfying way and the instrumentation is obscenely tight, despite the fact that the musicians don’t live near each other. I would like to say to the band that they should be very proud of it and that everyone should give it a listen. There’s enough depth that you can focus on it and find new things but it also doesn’t demand your attention in that way.

Rating: 9/10

Words: Jacob McCrone

In The Tomb Of A Forgotten King will be unleashed 30th March 2020.

Find MOMENTUM DAMNATI on Facebook.

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