Haxxan is yet another of these bands that seemingly come out of the blue, and release their first full-length without even a demo. With cool artwork made by Maxime Taccardi, it’s pretty easy to know this trip to the Loch Ness will not be a sunny one; only that we’re going to enter the dark swamp of murk and despair. Pretty much mid-tempo throughout, if not slow, this black metal album sticks to the old-school tradition of basic riffs, raspy vocals, easy structures, and does not contain an ounce of progressiveness (modernity be damned). Efficient but without surprise, ‘Loch Ness Rising’ still has a personality of its own, thanks to those keyboard moments and the few samples that contribute in creating a spooky B-movie atmosphere. We could have stayed on that and considered this an ‘average’ black metal album, without a huge life-expectancy, but (and thus the importance of not reading promo sheets before listening to an album), in fact Haxxan isn’t a beginner’s band at all, but a side-project of Necrophagia, which explains the quality of the vocals and that creepy vibe. Okay, clearly not as essential as their original band, but far better than some other projects they contributed to!
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