Devil’s Night Post: Black Cobra, Invernal

There are, in my mind, two Black Cobras: the radically-detuned, guitar-way-louder-than-vocals-and-drums sludge/doom masterpiece of Bestial, and… the rest of their albums. It’s like after that they changed into a more-realistic version of Lair of the Minotaur, mixed with High on Fire: faster songs, more punk/Motorhead influence….

Bestial to me is, easy, top 20 doom albums of all time. I used to not like their stuff after that, but I tell ya…

…this new stuff is really growing on me.

Invernal (especially with its evil-Dr-Suess cover art), is a furious detuned screamathon. There’s no filler, no “ambient intros,” they get straight to it.

“Avalanche” roars out of the gate first, and, though no one number sounds particularly different from the rest, it all works. Fast sludge cut with a Helmet flavor. A blackened Helmet with more obvious, tribal drums. “The Crimson Blade” shows most obviously this combination of extreme metal styles. “Erebus Dawn” and “Abyss” are rippers, too. “Abyss” is the slowest one here, and the most moody/seething.

Do yourself a favor and check this bad boy out. You’ll probably dig it, and if you don’t– there’s always Bestial to return to.


  1. Yeah, it’s like on Bestial they just turned the tone knob completely off and said, “You know what? Let’s just record and rock out and see what happens.” Invernal is my favorite album of theirs besides Bestial, but Bestial is frakkin’ awesome.

  2. BTW – just listening to Bestial for the first time on Spotify and wow! That first song One Nine is a ripper, those stops and feedback squeals are just amazing. In fact, the whole thing feels quite rhythmically different to the following records. I can’t believe I never took the time to work back to this one. Despite there being no bass, it’s very… bassy!

  3. Never really got into Black Cobra despite them ticking all the right boxes for me. I’ve given Chronomega quite a few spins but it’s never quite got its hooks into me. My initial dabbles with Invernal suggest the same thing – I’m left a bit… cold.

    It took me fucking FOREVER to click with High on Fire though so maybe Black Cobra and I can still get it on someday.

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