Acrid Death Fragrance by Vintage Death (2018)

Last December, Vintage Death‘s first EP, titled Acrid Death Fragrance, was released. Vintage Death is a one-man band founded by Carmine d’Annibale, best known for other melodeath projects like Rising Moon. This time, he has chosen to leave aside aliens and society and bring us an album centred on death as main theme through blackened melodeath with doom influences. Although this is the first approach to the music the new project aims to deliver and, obviosuly, has its limitations, the music in the EP is mostly enjoyable and has some good moments.

The song that opens the album, When the Spirit Smells His Corpse, sounds mainly to melodeath with some touches of doom. The influence of black metal only materializes in the little production of music and its repetitive structure. However, the melodies are catchy and the changes of rhythm add some variety to keep the interest. For me, the song would have worked much better if it were just melodeath more produced because, in this case, the influence of black is so little that it is not justified. Another point are vocals, which sound too distant and distorted, which may be annoying at first, but being an album close to black, I’m not going to complain. Gloomy Tombs, the second song, delivers much more energy. It follows the bases set by its predecessor, but it is much closer to melodeath with easy-to-listen melodies, although it maintains the cyclic structure and includes riffs where black is present.

So we come to Ominous Dreams, the first highlight of the EP. For the first time, melodeath and black blend perfectly and the rhythm becomes very loud, with harder moments, but without sacrificing the clarity of the melodies. The most interesting part of the song is towards the middle, when there is a nice acoustic guitar interlude that takes us towards an exciting transition that ends in the repetition of the riffs that opened the track, thus closing the circle of a very recommendable song. The next track, Acrid Death Fragrance, which gives name to the album and is the single, follows the steps of Ominious Dreams and is the second highlight of the EP. Although the structure and the melodies of its predecessor and the first song are still quite present, here the guitar becomes much more emotional. And after the storm, come the calm with Lume, a more atmospheric track that opens softly with a dark and solemn melody finally interrupted by a beautiful display of doom metal.

In conclusion, as EP and first approach, Acrid Death Fragrance manages to define a solid sound with interesting moments that I hope can be further developed in future publications. If you’re curious, it’s worth taking a look, even if it’s not something you’re going to listen to every day. I will be aware of how the story continues in the future 😉

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