There are some who would argue that the world of extreme metal is a barren wasteland, devoid of nuance or depth. That it merely serves as a crucible for ear-splitting cacophony, leaving little room for innovation. Allow me to introduce Chaver, a trio from Leipzig, Germany, that defies such dismissive characterizations with its paradoxical blend of ferocious death metal and the ethos of metallic hardcore. This duality defines them, making them an indispensable player in the extreme metal realm.
The band’s genesis traces back to 2016, originating from a hardcore background that laid the foundation for their fearless explorations into the metallic arena. They did not simply wake up one morning and decide to integrate more elements of death metal into their sound. Instead, their metamorphosis has been a journey marked by relentless, intentional evolution—captured through their discography, which includes a SPLIT, a 12″ EP, the potent SWAMP EP, and their critically acknowledged debut LP, “Transference.”
Their audacity for innovation reached an apex with “A Cellar Door,” an offering that plumbed the abyss of human suffering. What distinguished this release was not just its musical ferocity but its audacious incorporation of industrial and electronic elements. The result was a haunting symphony, a guttural scream from the bowels of despair.
In a live setting, Chaver is nothing short of incendiary. Their ferocity on stage is not merely a byproduct of the hours spent in rehearsal rooms but a testament to the grinding anvil of experience. They’ve shared the stage with extreme metal veterans like Sepultura and Dying Fetus, which has refined their performances into a force majeure. The electricity they generate doesn’t simply dissipate when the last chord rings out; it lingers, leaving an indelible imprint upon every listener’s soul.
Continuing their odyssey into the farther reaches of musical extremity, Chaver has graced us with “Of Gloom,” a release that confirms their ascendant trajectory in the sphere of extreme metal. The album is a crucible in which atmospheric death metal intermingles with their metallic hardcore origins, creating an immersive experience that refuses to be pigeonholed. It’s not simply heavy; it’s a multi-layered tapestry woven from strands of doom, post-metal, black metal, and, of course, their metallic hardcore roots.
The album’s narrative is equally compelling. It delves into the psychological morass of an individual fractured by a society that often seems engineered to inflict pain. The lyrics serve as an allegory for the bleak landscape of depression, portraying a protagonist seeking refuge in a place of eternal isolation—a sanctuary from unyielding trauma.
Released under the auspices of BDHW Records, “Of Gloom” is not just another album but a declaration of Chaver‘s arrival on the grand stage of heavy music. As they continue to push the envelope, synthesizing an array of influences into their unique blend of sonic brutality, one thing is clear: To embrace Chaver‘s art is to be captivated, shattered, and finally, reborn anew.
In an era where many bands are content to regurgitate the tried and tested formulas of their predecessors, Chaver offers something truly distinct. Their relentless pursuit of sonic evolution means that every release is an event, and “Of Gloom” is no exception. Far from a formulaic tribute to genres that have come before, it is a rich tapestry that reflects the dark complexities of the human experience. It’s time to set aside any preconceived notions you may have had about what extreme metal can be. Chaver is here, and they’re not going anywhere. Prepare yourself accordingly.
Shared below is a special track-by-track commentary for Chaver‘s album “Of Gloom,” offering further insight into this unparalleled journey through the depths of heavy music domination.
“Of Gloom” track by track commentary:
“Throne” serves as the album’s introduction, beckoning the listener to embark on a harrowing journey into the abyss. With ominous tones and a sense of impending darkness, it sets the stage for the odyssey that awaits. “Of Filth” is a late addition to the album, a catchy and compact banger that seamlessly blends our new atmospheric metal sound with the hard-hitting, groovy hardcore elements our listeners came for. Lyrically, it delves into a harrowing narrative of unrelenting external abuse, adding a stark contrast to the atmospheric backdrop.
“Turn to Skeletons” marks a significant transformation in our musical journey. Initially conceived as a blackmetalesque experiment, it evolved into an epic and melodic blackened deathmetal track. Lyrically, it mirrors the protagonist’s decision to turn away from society and its tormentors, creating a dark and atmospheric narrative.
In the misty expanse of “Wanderer,” our protagonist starts a haunting journey, seeking solace in isolation. What initially began as a bunch of riffs has transformed in the studio, with the infusion of electronic elements, into an enigmatic and shapeshifting musical narrative. Distorted fanfares, reminiscent of the intro, and eerie, epic bells intensify the haunting atmosphere, hopefully enveloping the listener in a captivating sonic experience.
“In the Depths” emerges as the fastest and most relentless track on the album, a ferocious death/grind banger that demands precision from our musicians. It’s a thrilling headbanger’s delight, an exhilarating rush of speed. Lyrically, the protagonist finally discovers their haven of solitude, descending into total isolation as the relentless pace mirrors the journey.
“Eternal Night” unveils a multifaceted blend of hardcore, sludge, and deathmetal, tightly woven into an atmospheric chunk of darkness. This track, along with the next two, was initially intended as an EP but evolved into the foundation of OF GLOOM. Within the lyrical narrative, our protagonist has found refuge in a place described as dark, dull, and filled with pain—an ultimate seclusion from the world’s existence.
“Cries of Despair” serves as the album’s pinnacle of moshy aggression, culminating in a brutal breakdown at its conclusion. Within the lyrical narrative, our protagonist reminisces about the outside world but makes a solemn decision—to remain in eternal solitude, with only one sound echoing through the desolation: their cries of despair. This track encapsulates the raw intensity and emotional depth of the album’s themes.
“Abysmal Maze” was designed to be a slower yet even more massive song, featuring a substantial, moshy slam segment in the end while maintaining its atmospheric essence. In the lyrical narrative, it represents the realization that the ache will forever endure, and the frustration is never going to end. This track is a slow-burning monolith of emotion and sound.
“Stench of Decay” offers a brief moment of respite amidst the storm, marked by the haunting presence of distorted fanfares. These fanfares serve as a harbinger of the album’s impending finale, the last major wave of intensity. In this instrumental interlude, anticipation replaces words.
“Everlasting Grief” serves as the album’s melodic culmination, adorned with reverb-soaked guitars and the haunting vocals of Susi, who also lent her talents to our previous album. Her voice beautifully encapsulates the combination of beauty and the ugly within the album’s lyrical themes. This final chapter represents the harrowing journey’s end of the protagonist, where not much remains—an introspective exploration of the inexorable decay of existence.