Spite Extreme Wing
If I were the type to judge solely on superficial details, I probably would never bother checking out a band like Spite Extreme Wing. In fact, I'm not precisely sure how I even came across Vltra as such a goofy band name usually is enough to pass on by. But here we are, an Italian black metal band (I'm still blaming that country for White Skull) with a goofy name that is actually rather enjoyable. They're apparently part of some sort of Italian black metal secret treehouse club called BMIA as well. Normally all those things suggest insufferable pretention from a band, but it so turns out Vltra is a surprisingly enjoyable record from start to finish.
To a degree, there's a bit more thrash or speed metal influence than the texturizing methods of a lot of black metal. Spite Extreme Wing knows the value of a good riff and packs their songs chock full of them, allowing for fluid transitions and a fairly straight forward approach. They don't get all clunky with unnecessary time changes or abrupt tempo jackknives that send song cohesions over the cliff. Nor are they unimaginative with song arrangements, as "V" demonstrates, which shows they can switch gears up midsongs without causing a major wreck. For those who need some more landmarks, perhaps Spite Extreme Wing could be seen as a more fluid, but less progressively influenced Enslaved.
Vltra falls a bit outside the "black n roll" of certain Norwegian bands such as Vried of Kvelertak, but their overall energy could appeal to fans of that style. Apparently this is the band's final release. If that indeed ends up being the case, they sure ended on a high note. Very good stuff and here's hoping they don't get overlooked because their name is a bit silly.
Review by John Chedsey
Review date: 12/2011