A band on a mission from the aether to convert black metal back toward primally antisocial art.
flag of the United States Profanatica - Tormenting Holy Flesh (1992)
Profanatica - "Live" (2001)
Profanatica - Collection (2001)
Profanatica - Profanatitas de Domonatia (2007)
Profanatica - Disgusting Blasphemies Against God (2009)
Tormenting Holy Flesh

Production: Morbid garage on both sides, with the latter being clearer.

Review: The east coast blasphemers of sublime artistic devices found within the most degrading and lowest motivations of the human soul as connectors of desire, in flagrant violation of taste and bourgeois ethos open this recording with searing howls and the minimalist songs they fashion from fragments of concept bent into self-resolving poetic antagonism. In solid tones as well as the lightly picked speeding tremelo that defines in fuzztone some of their lengthy phrases, cadence paces different emotions of various aspects to each song, staggering cyclic interchanges between riff variations to introduce schism and sickeningly convenient resolution.


1. Spilling Holy Blood (1:58) mp3 sample
2. Final Hour of Christ (1:00) mp3 sample
3. Weeping in Heaven (1:58)
4. I Arose (8:03) mp3 sample
5. Sangrieta Muerte (7:08)
6. Morbida Implosion (4:07)
7. Decadencia (1:50)
8. Brutales Masacres (5:12)
9. Ola de Violencia (3:56)
Length: 35:14

havohej/masacre split 1992 osmose
Copyright © 1992 Osmose

Guitar defines the space utilized by each phrase with a dominant presence in rhythm and melodic articulation in songs that are composed in counterpoint as fragments of melody becoming sensible and resolving through making oppositional tiers of modal values in harmonic suspension created by their imposition of various intervals in otherwise linear progressions, in effect opening holes in harmony which match similar devices in contrapuntal and recursively designed phrases, moving music by pure melodic "hook" defining both space of instantiation and development of narrative. The fleet footed and dynamically variant percussion of Paul Ledney clamps around the wandering exploration of each song, throbbing and pausing to open spaces for change.

Where songs often work with a dominant theme pair, Profanatica invent those from a central concept in shape of song which effectively defines the range in which its phrases must exist and which transitions they must imply. Concepts diversely range from slowly building theme and epic downturn into a coreless, soulless renaissance to apostate energies channeled into feral rhythm and nothing more. Consistently avantgarde in their assault on frameworks of perception and appreciation of art, these four tracks expound with more than meets the eye on what was then a new direction for black art in metal.

Masacre, destined to be forgotten as an above average on a disc next to those who defined the sound for much of a genre to follow, put together here their sparse works of basic death/grind that will connect glimpses of intellect rising with standard methods of form completion, creating music that lumbers where it could glide and as a result, often fails as a whole to keep the energy it inventively generates and nurtures. With shouted guerrilla vocals and basic instrumentation throughout, this half of the album demonstrates its heights early and then failing to match beginnings with directions of any intellectual sustenance, fades into the genericism of the genre at that time.


Production: Reasonable live capture via mobile unit.

Review: A seemingly uncut blast of live Profanatica, this album captures the songs made classic on other releases in their least coordinated and most inspired improvisational state, and for this deserves inclusion on the shelf of any discerning librarian of metal. Hear them tune up, screw up, ask if the music is "heavy" but most of all, play the abstracted and inverted tunes which resemble discarded thoughts from a perverse classical symphony assembled in a destruction of all order through reduction to the lowest elements from the highest.


1. Weeping in Heaven (3:40)
2. Sound Check (0:36)
3. Spilling Holy Blood I (1:53)
4. Spilling Holy Blood II (4:27)
5. Spilling Holy Blood III (0:39)
6. Final Hour of Christ (2:29) mp3 sample
7. Weeping in Heaven (3:22)
8. I Arose (1:27)
9. Of Pestilence (2:14) mp3 sample
10. Crucifixion Wounds (2:12)
11. I Arose (3:54)
12. Intro (3:15)
13. As Tears of Blood Stain the Altar of Christ (3:46) mp3 sample
14. Ledney Speaks (1:15)
15. I Arose I (1:23)
16. I Arose II (4:00)
17. Weeping in Heaven (4:05)
18. Ledney Speaks (0:39)
19. Heavenly Father (3:47)
20. Once Removed Saviour (4:28)
21. I Arose (3:54)
22. Intro (0:20)
23. Weeping in Heaven (2:53)
24. Tormenting Holy Flesh (4:44)
25. Untitled (0:52)
26. Scourging and Crowning (2:26)
27. Of Pestilence (1:58)
28. Untitled (2:04)
29. Sound Check (1:01)
Length: 73:53

profanatica live 2001
Copyright © 2001 Necroscope

Violent in execution and minimalist in elements, this music grinds in an elite method of positioning similar structures in conflict through tonal anchoring, allowing the adept caffeinized pocket drumming of insane progenitor and architect Paul Ledney to propel assemblies of alienated progressions in digital configuration of power chords and twin primal motions and combinations, offset by comfortingly vast noise and faded out shrieking. For those who wish a vision of a dress rehearsal in hell, this sure sounds like it.


Production: Fluctuation between reasonable demo and bathroom bootleg.

Review: The acerbic linear howl from hell that is the work of Paul Ledney and company is collected here from a range of sources, including the material from the Profanatica split with Masacre and various 7" and demo tapes. Minimal packaging and basic declarations direct focus appropriately to the music within, which bearing the strange variations of time and the heavy burden of ambient transitional material, presents this band in the most informative light yet.


"Putrescence Of..." demo (1990)
1. Raping of Angels (5:12)
2. Final Hour of Christ (2:26) mp3 sample
"Broken Throne of Christ" demo (1990)
3. Of Pestilence (2:21)
4. Scourging and Crowning (2:41)
5. Weeping in Heaven (3:08) mp3 sample
"Weeping in Heaven" 7" EP (1991)
6. Weeping in Heaven (2:14)
7. Heavenly Father (2:32)
"Tormenting Holy Flesh" (1992)
8. Spilling Holy Blood (2:44)
9. Final Hour of Christ (1:50)
10. Weeping in Heaven (2:11)
11. I Arose (5:39)
Studio session (1992)
12. As Tears of Blood Stain the Altar of Christ (3:48)
13. Crucifixion Wounds (1:50)
14. Once Removed Savior (a.k.a. Disease Infested Cunts of Dead Nuns) (4:28) mp3 sample
15. Mary (Conceived With Sin) (1:41)
16. Jehovah Fading (1:59)
Length: 46:52

profanatica collection 2001 on warhammer records
Copyright © 2001 Warhammer

Abrupt tormented riffs singe and dive, seething in the hissing deconstruction of their own forms before resurrecting in a flash and charring. Using the simplest, often most jarringly aesthetic, songwriting ideas possible this band of deranged individuals create short but transmissively rhythmic works, opening vectors into the listener with natural motions and sudden instantly logical transitions with an emphasis on primal riffs and unchartable screaming noise. A turbulent redux and cyclic winnowing and return both mixes ideas and keeps them jarringly separate, moving the listener between themes as if rooms in an apocalyptic funhouse.

Like most black metal, Profanatica aim for the sleeping mind of the human machine and saturate it with a bloodlike rhythm while a structure twists and regenerates in front of the ears. Once a continuity has been established, songs create spaces of introduction while flashing to final conflicts and resolutions within the motif of the value structure of each song, in concept and creation. Intermediary wanderings fade into an exploration of the dark underpinnings of each poetic mechanism like a drunken lazy genius deconstructing his enemies, slight motions leading to symphonic collaboration of natural forces toward change.

The works here chronicle this band from a youth of abandon to songs honed and handled to smoothness and absolute application to function alone that differentiated this band among other counterpoint atonal metal composers. Early versions of Havohej and Profanatica classics, in their often punkish or sprawlingly black metal personae, cut to the vein of the spirit pushing an unlikely quest through in a belief in its art. These artists were an inspiration to many European bands and remain legendary in the occupied American states.

Profanatitas de Domonatia
Hell's Headbangers
Production: Fuzzy and warm production which favors the intersection of bass and mids with an almost tape-derived organic buzz, but catches the instruments combined in a clear and enveloping room sound.

Review: To extend music beyond the extreme the artist as musician must distill it from the linear scale of construction/deconstruction and use the raw sound as an inspiration for the study of pattern, and the organization of patterns such that a cycle fuses the deconstructed with the creative genesis. As the latest evolution of a series of related acts, Profanatica Profanatitas de Domonatia unites its disparate forces in an unnervingly contemplative take on the death metal and black metal genres.


1. Master of Man Absolute (4:30)
2. Unto Us He Is Born (3:46)
3. Mocked, Scourged and Spit Upon (3:48)
4. Scourging and Crowning (3:27)
5. God Dethroned in Heaven (4:40)
6. Cursed Nazarene Whore (4:20)
7. Palid Savior (1:52)
8. Profanation of the Gods (3:42)
9. Them That Dwell in Heaven (3:05)
10. Betrayal of the Lamb (6:04)
Length: 39:14

Profanatica - Profanatitas de Domonatia (2007) Hell's Headbangers
Copyright © 2007 Hell's Headbangers

Sounding like a fusion of the first Incantation album and the early Norse-inspired works from Demoncy, and incorporating the legendarily organic drumming of Paul Ledney in a watchful underuse of technique to strengthen like a bone in muscle the mood of each progression, this album creates its songs in epic narrative format from New York death metal styled rushing chorded riffs interspersed with melodic development in lead-picked arias of phrase expanding on the ideas of the chorded elements and counterbalancing their intense rhythm, giving the songs a chance to settle back into themselves and then prismatic recombine and create an inner geometric dimension to what was established with linearity.

Much as metal finds beauty in darkness by using light and dark in a structuralist manner that emphasizes interconnectivity, Profanatica blends the fragmented with the whole in a staccato sequence which interrupts itself to resume previous thoughts joined with the present by the similarity of the motif shape they address; this style of "ring composition" is complicated by its tendency to cite from past Ledney-related projects, including first album Incantation, Havohej, Revenant and some riffs similar to those of fellow New Yorkers Immolation. Behind the drone, periodic clear tones and the intertwining smoke wisps of qlippothic voices merge.

The result, more a codex than the cycle running down of most rock-inspired music, forms cycles within cycles and in their commonality transitions between the two, creating a contemplative environment in which abstract meaning more than musical device must be tracked. Percussion often highlights guitar passages by opposition, preserving dynamic and detaching rhythm in the style of an ambient band while avoiding the expectation frenzy of popular music. Guitar melodies are breathtakingly beautiful when caught in full development but arise from ashes and dust of budget riff patterns, underneath rasping vocals designing to sound like rain caught by sudden fast winds. This album blatantly and cheerfully embraces beauty, and in its resurgent energy, suggests more a seizure of opportunities found beyond the linear logic of opposition and piety in our time than a worship of one or another parties. It is not war against Christ but a path beyond Christlike thinking enwrapped in the camouflage of blasphemy and perversion.

Disgusting Blasphemies Against God
Hell's Headbangers

The most populist Profanatica release restates familiar themes in an accessible but powerful virus designed for war, not avantgarde obscurity, which connects the obscure sublime of past releases with a rhythmic style straight from the mainline of black metal. Excellent production and simplification of the recognizable Profanatica styling ("filthy blasphemous black metal") emphasize aesthetic, but the ritual pacing in the development of song structures creates an aura of mystique.

1. Black Cum (3:38) mp3 sample
2. Pious Piece Of Shit (3:49)
3. Christ's Precious Blood Poisoned (3:12)
4. Smashing Religious Fucking Statues (2:51)
5. Angel With Cock (4:57)
6. Fuck The Blood Of The Lamb (4:19)
7. Covered In Black Shit (4:50) mp3 sample
8. No Angel Shall Sound (2:52)
9. Crush All That Is Holy Defile (4:57) mp3 sample
10. Excrement Sacrosanct (4:57)
Length: 40:23

Profanatica - Disgusting Blasphemies Against God: Black Metal 2009 Hell's Headbangers
Copyright © 2009 Hell's Headbangers

Like most Profanatica releases, simple parts varied over time and broken by an almost operatic rhythm that approximates a shouted diatribe verging into battle-song, by converging on a rhythmic mean, convert songs from an experience of bewilderment into a descent toward an atmosphere arising from obscurity that is both obscure but identifiable like a harmony. Restatement of motifs in different rhythms creates a labyrinth from the elemental: riffs seem to lead the song to conclusion, but that is foreshortened with a redirection to a new direction, expanding context and with it an atmosphere of mythic imagination and mystery.

The clearer recording allows the band to showcase a vivid vocal performance, which with riffs that resemble past Havohej/Profanatica work simplified and made more consonant, played more rigidly and yet incorporating more offbeat, nearly-jazzy rhythms and basslines, enable this band to be both palatable to the new black metal fanbase and obscure at once. Later songs experiment with Immolation-inspired surgical dirge rhythms, and melodic arpeggios of the style found in later Swedish death metal.

New precision and a direct message distills Profanatica into music like early Demoncy -- a foreboding wave of combat machines consuming the landscape, both inexorable and erratic, guided by ancient patterns of ceremony that mirror the fears and hopes in our minds. While it abandons the more Incantation-styled longer melodies and evolving song structures of the last release, this new release like the most recent from Beherit resurrects an older styles in a digestible form, reflecting a desire to wage memetic warfare against a world of unrecognized lies.

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