Obtest is an old band from Lithuania. They exist from 1992 and this is their fourth full-length album, although they count also many EPs. Except for their debut “Tukstantmetis” where they were more black metal influenced, they have built a very personal sound on all their other releases, and they try to perfect it with their last effort “Gyvybës Medis”.
Even though they are usually referred to as pagan black metal band, I believe that blackened war metal would be more appropriate to describe their music. Their sound is very epic and bombastic, while the guitars remind more of a heavy metal band. The riffing is simple, but with melodies that stay in your mind, with small refrains that are repeated many times in each song and with many melodic well-played guitar solos. The vocals are a mixture of epic and black metal singing and all the lyrics are in Lithuanian, dealing with local legends and ancient pre-christianic pagan tales. The result is very epic war-songs that could raise your “army’s” moral and help you crash your enemies…
If you have never listened to Obtest before you will find this cd very original, but if you’ve heard “Auka Seniems Dievams” or “Iš Kartos Į Kartą” the surprise element is gone. Of course the album is very good, with better production and maturity, and it is released in many different formats. Except for normal jewel case cd, it is also available in digipak format and in A5 deluxe digibook with the band’s biography (only in Lithuanian though), and even in picture LP. You can visit Obtest’s official pages to listen with your own ears.
Originally published on HeavyMetalCosmos