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Black metal punk rock? France's Phazm stabs at it with moderate results on ANTEBELLUM DEATH 'N ROLL. This 11-track collection takes a very different direction than most other bands who consider themselves part of the genre, as an apparent heavy blues virtue expounded by bands like Motorhead tangles with this quartet's Darkthrone obsession and Entombed worship, whipping up an odd blend that at times sounds like a slower, keyboard-less version of Children of Bodom on "Decay" or even Marilyn Manson on "How to Become a God". Demonstrating a flare for the cinematic a la Cradle of Filth yet staying as abrasive as possible on "The Bright", Phazm shows a versatility few black metal have the courage to encounter, let alone release.
- Mike SOS