With the many ways in which death metal has evolved over the years, and the many splintered subgenres in which it now exists, it’s good to know a band like Sulphurous are out there making death metal that is simply fucking rad. To try and wedge the Danish duo’s music into one niche of the genre or another would do it a disservice — there’s some cavernous echo to their sound, some death-doom ooze, but there’s also a lot of sinewy gore and arch cathedral riffs. And while one could try to neatly label them, listening to their songs is just too much damn fun to waste time worrying about why they’re so good.
The band’s new two-song EP, Encircling Darkness, perfectly encapsulates why Sulphurous are one of 2021’s death metal bands to beat. The opening title track is grand and arcane, but in its riffs and gurgled vocals also simmers a ground-level tangibility, a sense that you could see this song played in a blacklit club basement even as it transports you to some evil chasmic realm. Follow-up “Unfathomable Display of Rotting Creation” spews forth with the same menace, but keeps things in the tight, sharp three-plus minute range, so that every ancient riff and primal drum fill feels perfectly vital. The record does what EPs are meant to do — piques the listener’s interest, gets them involved, and leaves them with just enough that they’re hungry for more. The question that Encircling Darkness raises is simple: who are these guys, and when can we hear a full-length album from them?
Listen to our exclusive stream of Sulphurous’ Encircling Darkness EP below and kneel before the power of killer fucking death metal:
Sulphurous’ Encircling Darkness drops March 15th via Me Saco Un Ojo, and is available for preorder on both black and silver vinyl.
Words by Chris Krovatin