Altarage hail from the Spanish city of Bilbao in northern Basque Country. Their identities buried beneath black veils, Altarage are a band whose music stands and falls on its own merits. Their murky, disorienting species of blackened death metal is dragged straight from the depths of Lovecraftian horror, as chilling howls cry out from the roiling maelstrom of churning guitars and percussion. This is the musical equivalent of not just staring into the abyss, but entirely submerging oneself in the bleak depths; Endinghent is an evocative, psychosis-inducing ritual of relentlessly oppressive death metal.
Finland has always pioneered various forms of disturbing, unsettling death metal. Demilich, Demigod, Convulse, and Adramalech have gone on to inspire waves of death/black metal bands far beyond Finland’s borders. Desolate Shrine is very much a different kind of beast, equal parts black metal and death metal, with the crushing weight of doom metal and disturbing flourishes of unhinged dissonance and chaos. Their fourth full-length album finds the band refining and evolving their sound by exploring old influences in new ways on their best album to date.