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Invocator "Weave the Apocalypse" CD

Posted on Wednesday, May 24th, 2006 @ 8:54am » permalink

Invocator - Okay, every self-respecting metal fan needs to take heed of this post, because yesterday when I referred to this as "some of the most criminally underrated and completely and utterly badass early-90's death/thrash of all time" I was not fucking kidding, so listen up, because this will probably be one of the greatest hidden treasures I ever write about here.

Sometimes it all comes down to simple mathematics, really. Even though I had never heard of the band in my entire life, while browsing the used bins of a local record store: Released on Black Mark in 1993 + Dan Seagrave cover art + a mere $6 = Mine. The end. Sure, I was expecting generic third-rate death metal that I'd probably resell after a few listens, but sometimes you take a chance, and sometimes it pays off tenfold.

This is one of those times.

Within 10 seconds of popping this CD in for the first time (thanks to impeccable opener "Through the Nether to the Sun") I was flooded with a surge of questions and, quite honestly, felt both thrilled and enraged at the same time. Why the fuck have I not owned this record for the greater portion of the 13 years since its release!? Why is this album not widely held in high regard right alongside all of the other early-90's classics of technical death/thrash metal!? More importantly: What in the fuck is wrong with the world that someone as obsessed with this music as myself did not even know that this band existed until four days ago… and why in the name of all things completely and utterly badass did I have to discover it through a blind $6 purchase in a fucking used bin!? Whoever sold this CD: You're fucking not smart, but thank you kindly, because now the problem has been rectified. 13 years late, but better late than never, so I'll be thankful for what I can. One man's trash is another man's treasure and all that…

Invocator formed in Denmark in the late-80's and originally broke up in the mid-90's after releasing three full-lengths, of which this masterpiece, "Weave the Apocalypse", was their second. Useless trivia: The band featured Per Moller Jensen, perhaps best know at present for his work in The Haunted. Also, I was actually stunned to learn that guitarist/vocalist Jacob Hansen reformed Invocator with an almost entirely new lineup five or six years ago, so their most recent album was released in 2003 (though while not bad, it doesn't hold a candle to this).

The general consensus seems to be that "Weave the Apocalypse" is the band's finest hour, and from what audio samples I've been able to locate in the last few days I'd say that's an accurate assessment. But holy shit what an album this is, chock full of short and memorable tracks that are jam packed with some of the meatiest riffs I've heard in a long, long time. This material really does walk a fine line between thrash and death metal, with unique vocals and a songwriting style that really was way the hell ahead of its time – while still clinging to all the best that true thrash had to offer in the 80's. It's fuckin' great, because there are shitloads of fucked up time signatures and tempo changes with some blazing and well-arranged leads that all combine winding melody and dissonance in a truly creative fashion, but the guitar tone is one of the best I've ever encountered – hence that meatiness to the picking patterns that really amps up the chunkiness of the attack and creates some wholly crushing moments (see 35 seconds into "Lost at Birth" for proof).

The last song on the CD (the title track) is one of the best, but it runs 3:21 and sounds like it cuts short a few seconds early (or more) right in the middle of a riff, which drives me fucking nuts. I assume it's an idiotic mastering/manufacturing error that affects all existing copies of the CD, but if by chance someone out there has a copy on which this is not a problem, please do let me know. Thanks.

While the official status of this album is most definitely out of print, at least you can thankfully still find copies. Generally they seem to be priced in the $20 – $30 range (new or used), which is pretty damn steep, but… I guess it almost makes sense since this album is such a fucking scorcher. I absolutely recommend it on every level, so if you can find the right price, take care of business:

@ Amazon.com

Rest assured more Invocator material is certainly in my future, too! And a lot of times I think the more I "cuss" the better an album is, so… once again it all comes down to simple mathematics with this one, ha, ha!

13 Comments...

  1. Anonymous says:

    this really kicks serious ass you should post more thrash metal of the 80's anthony

  2. Anonymous says:

    not the 80s, just early 90s haha.. i really need to hear some of those "tech metal classics", and yeah, this kicks ass

  3. Avi says:

    I've been too lazy to ever track down any of Invocator's full-lengths, but I've always thought that their contribution to the "Slatanic Slaughter" tribute comp totally ripped. This proves it wasn't a fluke.

  4. alex says:

    these tracks were really cool, i like it alot.

    could you pretty please do a review of the new tragedy full-length sometime in the near future?

  5. AVERSIONLINE says:

    I just ordered the Tragedy a few hours ago but I should hopefully have it Saturday. It's probably a safe bet that I'll write it up within the next couple of weeks…

  6. PUSWART says:

    I was lucky enough to pick up Invocator's "Excursion Demise" back in the early '90s and I must agree with you that it's a shame they were so overlooked. CHEERS to you for reminding me of them. I am going to brake out the cd right now!

  7. Anonymous says:

    this shit rips! the only gripe i have (as with most of the old thrash) are the vocals. i just wish they were deeper and more brutal. plus, that echo thing they've got going sucks. but such were the times.

  8. Howard says:

    Damn, this album is hot- awesome thrash/death mix. I actually have a greater appreciation for the old school thrash vocals after hearing so many contemporary thrash/death bands doing the "brootal" style these days (though I'm still a big Dew-Scented fan.) If I'm not mistaken, some of Invocator's riffage has a faint NYHC vibe (but by no means do they have a HC style mind you), but then that could be that I'm used to the metallic hc style that it might be a case of HC bands borrowing from Invocator. In any case, awesome recommendation.

    BTW Andrew, where'd you pick up that new Tragedy cd? I'm trying to track it down with no luck

  9. AVERSIONLINE says:

    Howard, I agree 100%. The first time I played the Invocator CD I was thinking how some of the simpler riffs are dead on in the 90's metallic hardcore style that I love so dearly, ha, ha. And I also love classic thrash vocals, all the new bands that take it too far don't know what the hell they're doing!

    You can pick up the Tragedy (while it lasts) at:

    http://www.29northrecords.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=3484

    It seems shockingly hard to come by thus far.

  10. broKeNbot says:

    I knew you wouldn't let me down! Thrash rules, and it's legacy will live on forever! This is the one album that I don't have from them. Excursion Demise was my first experience with them. Unfortunately, my only copy is a tape. And that tape had to be transplanted into another tape! Oh well!
    These are great posts, Anthony!
    Keep up the good work!

  11. Anonymous says:

    great to see someone writing about this great band and album. my first exposure to them was actually with dying to live, which is great on it's own, but weave the apocalypse is still their best. and just to confirm, it's an idiotic mastering/manufacturing error on the last track being cutoff.

  12. Perle says:

    Damn its nice to read this review, i play guitar on this album, he he he. thanx alot.

  13. Moe says:

    I just want to add that Invocator is the most overlooked band in a long time. Fortunately I have seen them live many times, most recently with Mercenay 19th of may 2007! So they are still alive and kicking – even though they didn't play anything new. But a complete set of old hits is fine by me. :) And I'm always blown away by the professionalism (is that a word?) of Jacob Hansen and his crew.

    Weawe the Apocalyse, Through the Flesh through the Soul, Excusion Demise, Dying to lLive are all albums that get 10/10 from me.

    Check http://www.invocator.com – they might show up near you some day.

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