Photophobia are a three-piece act with members originating from both Finland and Italy. This eight track debut record opens with the chillingly titled ‘I Desire You Wrapped in Plastic’. Photophobia quickly goes for the throat and grinds through a superb eight and a half minutes of fuzzed black metal. The production is not as clean as it could be on this early release from the excellent Immortal Frost Productions; however it only adds to the bleakness of it all. Horrifying shrieks from vocalist Letaliis (…, Oppressive light) are spewed forth with an enormous amount of emotion. All the while he is backed by the marching drum work and also the trademark black metal distortion from guitarist U. Morbid (Fornicatus ,Tunes of Despair). Mammoth rhythms are bound together with steady drumming and the reliable bass guitar bulks the overall sound very well. The sombre and disturbing cover art which is provided by artist Joshua Brian Rowe, demands the listener’s attention and ties in with the groups name, which is the term given to people who suffer from discomfort to the eyes in bright light. The brilliant intro to ‘When Life Run on Razorblades…’ gathers pace very quickly and is one of the faster tracks on this release. The rumbling drums lends itself gently to the melody, although it is not overbearing, further highlighting the good production work. The key changes are well thought out and follow the theme of the album. Proceedings are brought to a close with an impressive cover of Lifelover’s Stockholm. Although this has been available since 2010, it is still worth venturing back to check this out, there is a lot to explore on Humana Fragilitas. If you are a fan of this type of music then you will definitely enjoy this.
U. Morbid (Guitars and Drums), Letaliis (Vocals and lyrics), A. Morbid (Bass).