Feral Legion by Invultation

Release date: August 18, 2023
Label: Sentient Ruin Laboratories

“I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.”

After decades teetering on the edge, a world plunges into chaos and incomprehensible madness. Troops are deployed, buttons are pressed and in a flash, a blaze of devastation sends waves of suffering across the land. The fires of dominance devour the earth as nothing, not even a trace of weaponry, is left standing.

Selfish, power-hungry and consumed with hatred, the world has reached its climax, boiling to a cataclysmic inferno. Countries and their leaders deplete their resources and money, squandering this and the lives of men in order to fuel their heartless eradication. Humanity has inevitably fallen and a state of utter darkness, rebellion and survival arises from the ashes of death.

The future War ironically is bereft of the technology that destroyed the world, leaving the few hordes that remain scorched but alive battling as primitive warriors with feral rage and spears as defence. We are reduced to animals, using literal sticks to continue to beat each other down, as if apocalypse wasn’t enough.

This scenario and its vivid imagery encapsulates everything about Invultation. Throw in the possibility of mutant Lycanthope soldiers and you have yourself a conceptual blitzkrieg of an album. Invultation is the one-man, one-beast project of Columbus musician Andrew Lampe, also of The Wakedead Gathering and Longbarrow. Conceived back in 2015 and influenced by bands such as Archgoat and Incantation, Invultation is the death-bringing scourge marked with wolverine malevolence, embodying the vitriol of hatred through the raw and unhinged style of barbaric and dirty old-school metal. Feral Legion is Invultation’s 3rd full-length, following Wolfstrap and Unconquerable Death.


‘The Howling Convocation’ is unleashed from its cage, opening the album baring teeth and foaming at the mouth, snarling like a possessed, rabid beast. Abyssal shredding is dragged from the depths, churning like a violent torrent amongst bombarding hammer-blow drum blasts. Those whammy bar theatrics and screeching arpeggio solos add to the old-school 90s vibe, which is ever-present throughout the album. Raging blast-furnace ‘Retching Holy Viscera’ piles on the violence, relentlessly blistering by and seething uncontrollably like an unhinged madman. The midsection rips along with Morbid Angel-esque ferocity through classic sounds of revved-up gutteral tremolo shredding and snaking solo guitarwork.

Title track ‘Feral Legion’ comes slashing at your eyes and ears with terrifying claws. It’s an untethered, jackhammer body shot of audial savagery that has fits of utter mercilessness where crushing riffs speer violently through your temple and grind your brain into meat. ‘Mark of the Fang’ is a standout track that slithers into hideous form after invoking samples from horror classic The Blood on Satan’s Claw. Want to feel like your face has been sandblasted and skull flattened by bricks but at a slightly reduced tempo? Look no further than this track. Add a creeping, insidious dread that looms over like a dark cloud and the feeling that you’re being pursued through the mire by ravenous wolves and the track takes on the malign energy of suffocating doom, especially with those clattering drum hits forcing you under the mud and into submission.

What is a caltrop, I randomly ask? A caltrop is basically a cluster of sharp spines or nails used to disable vehicles in war-time. The intriguing thought of a human caltrop conjures up visions of men twisted into horrific fleshy jacks, their bodies entwined together and bones sharpened to a deadly point… or it’s just caltrops that people step on? Either way it’s nasty, but Echoes and Dust are thrilled to bring you the track premiere of this audial, and possibly horrifying, vision brought to life. ‘Human Caltrops’ aims for the jugular off the bat and blazes by in a short flurry of adrenalised aggression. It’s the album’s shortest proper track but stays rattling around your skull for a long time afterwards. Dulled, rapid-fire tremolos send you spinning back into the early days of battle vests as vintage, swirling riffs get the hair whirling in a headbanging windmill storm as do those foot-stomping midsection kicks and dissonant solos. It’s as sharp and fearsome as the title suggests.

Feral Legion is another rampant, banging berserker from the talented multi-instrumentalist. Ten tracks of throat-ripping, blood-frothing extremity and neck-snapping abhorrence funnelled through imposing bestial savagery full of old-school attitude and swagger. Vocals bark, snap and bite, drums pummel like sonic booms from artillery weapons at the speed of bullet-flying gunfire and devastating riffs seem simple but boil in a maelstrom of turbulent rage, perfectly capturing that early death metal flavour.

It’s the soundtrack to an assault, a full-on all against all war. This is pure and ugly death metal, raw, unrelenting and caustic music fit for the battle field. Feral Legion may tear chunks out of its competitors in the war for death metal album of the year.

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