Music by VICE

Italian Black Metal Masters Mortuary Drape Crack Open the Coffin With Two New Songs

Stream two new tracks from the Italian masters of black metal horror.

by Kim Kelly
Dec 4 2014, 5:31pm

Photo courtesy of Iron Tyrant

Mortuary Drape's new album is a thing of beauty—assuming your idea of "beauty" translates to mean "eerie, occult-obsessed black metal." Spiritual Independence is the band's fifth album, and marks Wildness Perversion and his cohorts' twenty-eight year reign as the undisputed kings of the Italian metal underground. For this album, founder Wildness Perversion hopped back behind the drum kit for the first time since 1995's All The Witches Dance, and shows that he hasn't missed a beat. Credited with ushering the funeral fog of black metal's Second Wave into their homeland, Mortuary Drape has conjured up quite a formidable discography, with All The Witches Dance and 1997's Secret Sudaria as its crowning jewels. Last month, the seminal outfit lowkey released one of the year's great metal records via the always reliable Iron Tyrant label, and posted a few songs on Soundcloud to whet diehard appetites beforehand.

Spiritual Independence is a gloomy, atmospheric masterpiece laden with subtle twists and turns, clever hooks, thrashy riffs, and morbid, horror-inspired melodies. It's no surprise that a band formed in 1986 culls the best from NWOBHM's old guard and the first two waves of black metal's rise, and makes one wonder just how black metal itself may have evolved if Mercyful Fate had captivated a bigger audience than Bathory or Hellhammer did way back when.

The answer to that burning question may lie buried in time, but we're lucky enough to have not one, but two more album cuts for you today—"Once I Read (Marble Tomb)" and "Immutable Witness." Enter the Drape below...

Spiritual Independence is now available from Iron Tyrant Records.

Kim Kelly is getting down with the Wildness on Twitter.