Rorcal- Világvége

By Chris Dahlberg

Published on Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Rorcal’s third full length album Világvége came out on vinyl last year, but it’s recently gotten another push in the form of a CD release that will be available in the spring. I missed hearing about this release the first time around, so I was interested in seeing what this Swiss group had to offer. What I discovered was an intense blend of doom/sludge and black metal that’s able to build a chilling atmosphere within a wall of sheer noise, and that’s definitely a good first impression.

Let’s get the obvious out of the way, this is an incredibly dense album. The first thing you’ll notice as you make your way through is that the instrumentals hit hard and have an abrasive tonality that helps create a wall of sound. Although there are slower sections that have a dirtier/grimier feel that pulls from doom and sludge influences, a significant portion of the instrumental work has the chilling tonality of black metal with some of the all-out assault of hardcore. I was first reminded of France’s Celeste, as there are similar moments where the sheer chaos of the material captures the same vibe as that particular band. But Rorcal really heads in their own direction, and it will take a couple of times through Világvége before you really start to notice all of the nuances. With each listens different riffs started to stand out, and the combination of the blasting and thicker atmosphere was truly enticing. Considering the album title is Hungarian for doomsday, the intensity of the arrangements makes perfect sense and the group has been able to take plenty of familiar styles and put their own spin on them.

Lead singer Yonni Chapatte has a harsher, abrasive scream that is well suited to the type of sound Rorcal has created on this album. There are moments where his performance is almost completely swallowed up by the wall of sound, but every time this occurs Chapatte breaks free only a few seconds later and reclaims the spotlight. If your tastes are like mine and the harsher, psychotic sounding pitches of black metal and sludge are the ones that you prefer Világvége should instantly grab your attention as it often sounds like the vocals are going to burst out of your speakers and strangle you. At the end of some of the songs Rorcal has inserted some sound clips of operatic singing that add to the tense vibe and perfectly transition into the next arrangement. Overall, the vocals do stay at around the same pitch for the majority of the album but considering that they never dip in intensity for that entire period of time this ends up not being a bad thing.

A lot of different labels have signed on to produce vinyl and CD versions of this record (just look at the list below), and it’s easy to see why. It may take a couple of times through for listeners to truly get a feel for everything that Rorcal has to offer on Világvége, but the chilling melodic leads and blistering intensity will get under your skin once it sinks in and you’ll want to return for more. Fans of sludge/doom along the lines of Amenra or black metal infused sludge similar to Celeste will want to seek this one out, as Rorcal is able to capture both a melancholic atmosphere and sheer sense of chaos and destruction throughout this release that’s sure to leave an impact.

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