This album reminds me of a time when Black Metal was dangerous. It’s chaotic and raging and seethes through the groove in the record like a maelstrom of mania. ‘Relics Of Inner War’ perhaps belongs to a different era, for this debut full-length from one-man (Finnish, in case it matters) operator Vainaja sounds like it was cut directly from a matrix 20 years ago and transported into the modern world.

Mindless Black Metal performed like this is worth its weight in gold. There might be only 30 minutes on this record but it’s still way better than most other albums you’re likely to hear this year. I’m almost afraid to say anything more lest I start sounding like Cornigr’s PR manager or stand accused of working for the label but, trust me, this is an utterly sublime slice of cold, eerie, menacing Black Metal majesty.

And the vinyl version does the music complete justice, even if the front cover is hard to decipher (thus my decision to compromise and take a picture of the back cover). Comes with a cool inner sheet including lyrics and, frankly, constitutes the rarest of gems. August gets off to a flying start!

Evilometer: 666/666