I was quite intrigued when I first heard of Dhwesha a couple
of years back. A band that plays old-school death metal with the lyrics in
their native tongue of Kannada (the regional language of Karnataka, a state in
India). Being a fan of various metal bands across Europe who have their words penned
down in their own language, this was a bold move for an Indian band, something
I held high praise for.
Circumstances have it, I never actually got to listening to
Dhwesha, that was until their debut album – “Sthoopa” was released. The album
made up for missing out on them till now, as it has been on constant loop
since I got hold of it. This is a classic old-school death metal record!
The album consists of 8 muddy, ferocious death metal tracks
with absolutely no filler. Right from the onslaught of “Sattva Bali” there is
no turning back. This is not the total modern in-your-face brutal death metal, with the album having a nice groove and melody along with the more raw riffs in the music. At
points elements of black and doom metal start seeping through, adding their own unique blend.
The guitar work by Ajay and Somesha must be highly praised
through the album. There are layers of very intricate lead guitar work, almost
melodic along with the rough jagged old school riffs from the rhythm guitar. A combination,
resulting in some beautiful music, brought to the fore in tracks like “Sthoopa”
The songs are dark and melancholic, with a lot of variation
in their tempo, adding to the listening experience. “Kapala Haara” has one of the best variations through the track, with
great guitar work weaving through the music. Before you realize, 40 minutes
have passed, with no two songs sounding too similar.
Coming on to the production, it is not the cleanest one, but
something that works with the music of Dhwesha perfectly. A slight echo-effect, helps create a nice atmospheric vibe in this record. The cavernous effect, makes the vocals slightly loose their brutality, but makes them
work perfectly with the raw-old school music.
Overall, a very strong debut album from the band. It’s raw,
heavy, atmospheric and very original. One of the best release in the Indian
Metal scene this year. If you’re a fan of old-school death metal, check this out – amazing music!