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In the larger context of death metal, Pakistan is a rare country to look for a death metal band. Yet against all the odds, Azaab appeared out of nowhere and instantly caught the attention of the metal scene, and for a good reason! Backed by the mighty Satanath Records, which have been in the forefront to promote underground bands, Azaab dropped their new single “The Infernal Citadel”, which gained a great reputation quickly. It was about time the band would unleash its full wrath with its debut full-length album. Finally, their album “Summoning the Cataclysm” is out, and I can’t help but talk about it.

From the starting itself, the band avoids the generic trope of blasting straight-forward and rather chooses for a prelude track.The album intro “Pandemonium” starts off with a serene clean intro with a sense of darkness and melancholy mixed in it, before blasting off with powerful riffs and intense double bass on drums accompanied by symphonic elements. Tracks like “Carbon Plague” and “Hollow Park” channelizes the old-school death metal energy to its finest with its tremolo riffs. Being fast and techy to its core, the sound will instantly remind you of Hath and Decapitated. Often, the guitar layers account for moments of fast techy shreds. “Hollow Park” especially has a dominating groove, in the fashion of old Decapitated, behind all the double bass and blast beat madness.







Halfway through the album accounts for the tracks “Preachers of Hate” and “When Worlds Collide” - a surreal blackened feeling surrounds the mighty caveman riffs. The caveman riffs along with the chuggy moments are powerful enough to melt your face! In addition, the tapping riffs in Gorod fashion and the use of a lot of open dissonance chords like Opeth accounts for some memorable passages on the tracks. Not to forget, Bobby Koelble (Death) as the featured artist on “When Worlds Collide” accounts for some insanely technical solos. Accompanying that are the guitar proficiency of Afraz Mamoon and Shahab Khan, who don't fail to mesmerize me for a moment.



“The Infernal Citadel” is one of the most unique tracks of the album - Starting off with middle-eastern phrygian based riff to flowing into sheer heaviness with dissonance chord progression and few catchy riff phrasings aided by the groovy drums, it showcases a lethal mix of brutal death metal and old-school death metal. The guitar solo of Phil Tougas (First Fragment, Equipoise) brings in total mayhem for the later half. “Trophies” begins with a melancholic clean intro before bleeding into the blackhole of mammoth dissonance chords and powerful drums. Clearly, the song knows how to be melodically-laiden. While the heavier rhythm guitars account for much of the brutality, the lead guitars carry forward the heart of the song. Adhitya Perkasa is a non-stop machine on every song, switching flawlessly between his fast blast beats and groovy double bass while losing no intensity. The band doesn't fail to amaze you even for the last track - the catchy technically driven “B.L.O.O.D.B.O.R.N” will be a favorite to all the extreme metalheads out there.



Azaab doesn’t shy away to look back to their roots and pay tribute to one of the prominent bands of the death metal realm - Decapitated. The cover to their classic “The Empty Throne” is almost on-point, and the band almost nails it to perfection. The coarse and unique vocal texture of Saad Latif adds some individual flavor to the song.





In the present time of oversaturated music where numerous records are being dumped in the heap of releases, the factor of “memorability” matters a lot. Azaab manages to find a perfect balance between the grooves and technicality of death metal. Also, mixing their old-school approach with the new school modern elements is quite evident too. With “Summoning the Cataclysm”, the band establishes their signature style, which is quite unique and distinguishable from other bands of the same niche. Also, what needs to be complimented is their sheer musical prowess. The guys in the band are some of the best musicians, and the album is the sheer proof of it. Without any doubt, “Summoning the Cataclysm” adds for a noteworthy record in Azaab’s discography, and will be cherished and remembered in the future days to come.





Pakistan's Azaab hit us with a riff heavy offering of death metal that should easily please most fans of the genre. They draw on multiple areas of influence ranging from OSDM to melodic death metal, blackened death metal and thrash death. For this album they've also added some big-name power with the inclusion of Indonesian drummer Adhytia Perkasa from legendary act SiksaKubur.



The album is filled with an endless stream of high energy melodic riffs with a decent level of technicality to them. We have the band's dual guitarists Afraz and Shahab to thank for this. When paired with the unrelenting and unwavering power of Adhytia's drum work there's a tonne of power on display throughout the album. The guitar tone is on the cleaner side of things but still has a real bite to it and at some points it gets into dirtier territory.



On top of that we have the powerful vocals of Saad barrelling over the instrumentals. These are definitely of the old school death metal variety, meaning that they remain understandable despite being raw and guttural. One unique element on the album is the occasional use of effect laden vocals that sound robotic/sci-fi oriented in nature. Lastly Waqar adds a whole other level of depth to the overall sound of the album with his bass work.



For a debut album the band have really come out of the gates swinging and not just their fists but a sledgehammer. The production, mixing and mastering on the album is stellar and really allows each members individual contribution to really shine. What's important to note though is that it isn't overproduced and doesn't have that sterile atmosphere like a lot of modern technical death metal. There's still a bite and certain level of dirt and bite. The album art also deserves praise, it’s probably one my favourite pieces so far this year.



Overall, I was extremely impressed with the band's first offering, and I think there is something here for most fans of death metal and its many subgenres. There are two tracks available for listening, so go give them a spin today.





What a very good surprise. It didn’t start so well, I didn’t enjoy the intro but after… Uh la la. The band is moving inside the progressive Death Metal mixed with the technical Death Metal and I must say this. Well done. This album must be on your “listen to list”. Check them.





Newly Georgian-based label Satanath Records (and serious kudos for the move in support of Ukraine and against the Midget Mussolini With Moobs, despite the cost – may other Russian labels and businesses follow suit!) and Indonesia’s Maxima Music Pro join forces to release this quirky cross between Ultimate Incantation-era Vader, Sinister and a hint of Cynic (or perhaps even Voivod) with those computerized vocals on “bloodborn”. By the time you get to the Decapitated cover, you’ll even flash on post-Van Drunen Pestilence, which says a lot.


Hailing from Pakistan, these guys may be the most solid desi metal band since Kryptos was still a diehard thrash act, and may in fact be far more technical, if that’s your thing. Certainly the production is far more solid and vintage death metal in sound, which is a major advantage you wouldn’t necessarily expect from a band of their regional origin. Solos and lead breaks are both varied and solid, riffs are busy but not crazed, and blastbeat sections are kept to a reasonable minimum, considering.


Vox are unspectacular at best, and it’s a tad too brutal to modern sounding to really hit that sweet spot, but it’s certainly a solid death metal listen. And given that we’re talking a Pakistani act? Amazing that it comes off quite so strong as it does, if for no reason other than the expected production and financial limitations they clearly surpass with their work herein.


Give it a listen, particularly if you appreciate the bands aforementioned. You will not be disappointed.





Quanto sono ignorante e prevenuto. Death metal da Islamabad… Pakistan. Non ci avrei mai creduto. Ma come posso non pensare che in ogni parte del mondo ci siano fan di questa stupenda musica chiamata metal? Come posso essere così ottuso? Meno male che ci sono gli Azaab a prendermi a calci nel culo e a darmi una svegliata. La band suona death metal e tributa in egual misura i mostri sacri (esistono band che, nella mia visione folle delle cose, sono come delle divinità ancestrali, quasi creature nate dalla penna di Lovecraft o meglio da quella di Abdul Alhazred) e le nuove colonne del death metal. La band riesce a suonare melodica e devastante allo stesso tempo, il tutto senza dover per forza scindere i due componenti alchemici. Non esistono riff pesantissimi e cacofonici e poi momenti melodici e orecchiabili, ma bensì una continua furia distruttiva che incorpora in modo più o meno subliminale forme melodiche che riescono a farci assimilare al meglio ogni riff, ogni passaggio. Chi è/era in grado di far questo al meglio? Penso ai Death, ai Monstrosity, ai Vital Remains (non esagero nel dire che gli Azaab ricordano queste band, riportandomi alla memoria capolavori come ‘Dechristianize’ e ‘Spiritual Apocalypse’). Molto bella la voce di Saad Latif, profonda, gutturale, quasi bentoniana, e come il famoso cantante/bassista marchiato, anche Saad utilizza spesso la doppia voce (growl e scream) che crea davvero un effetto devastante. Ebbene gli Azaab citano anche Deicide e nei rallentamenti più evocativi i Morbid Angel di ‘Domination’. Parti di chitarra iper tecniche, assoli stupendi, atmosfere maligne e “cosmiche”, voce brutale… un disco che mi piace moltissimo e che mi è piaciuto sin dal primo ascolto. Registrato ai Fractal Flow Studios, con una splendida copertina di Ardha Lepa e ospiti di valore come Bobby Koelble (assolo di chitarra in ‘When Worlds Collide’), questo ‘Summoning The Cataclysm’ mi ha fatto riconciliare con il death metal, mi ha fatto imparare ad essere meno ottuso e ignorante, e mi ha fatto venir voglia di volare a Islamabad per stringere la mano agli Azaab. Lo sto ascoltando da giorni e non mi stanca mai. Grandi!





In my last review, I mentioned how much I love being able to find great metal in weird places. Fittingly, let me introduce Azaab, a death metal band from Islamabad, Pakistan. Their name means “calamity”, “torment”, or “divine punishment” in Arabic. In trying to get a gauge of what the metal scene is like in Pakistan, I found that the Almighty Metal Archives lists only 57 total bands from the country. According to an article* from April 2021, the metal scene in Pakistan is still very small, underground, and largely DIY, making Summoning the Cataclysm all the more impressive.




The band consists of established musicians from the Islamabad metal scene, the core of whom have known each other and played together for years. The creative force behind the band is lead guitarist Shahab Khan, who wrote a stockpile of material for this record. They enlisted Indonesian drummer Adhytia Perkasa from brutal death metal band SiksaKubur for session drums, and his destructive drumming style helps keep Azaab firmly grounded in brutality.


The centerpiece of Summoning the Cataclysm is the guitar work. Shahab writes swirling guitar solos and aggressive tremolo riffs to accompany brutal drumming capable of blasting your face off. Much of this album is a guitar showcase in the best way. The rhythm guitar tone is crushing, and along with the awesome bass they create a solid ground for the lead shredding to stand on. The lead tone can be a bit modern for my taste, but it’s not offensive. Shahab Khan’s writing is diverse, creating both intense technical parts and soaring melodic ideas, packing each song full of riffs.




Tech-death can be very hit-or-miss for me. But you’ll notice I didn’t label Azaab a tech-death band, and for good reason. A frequent complaint of mine about “technical” death metal is that often the guitars can feel like they’ve foregone melody for self-indulgent virtuosity, but Azaab manage to have their cake and eat it too. Even the most chaotic riffs feel reined in and deliberate, while sweeping solos don’t overstay their welcome. Verse riffs jump out at the listener, but never sacrifice a headbang-able groove, which lets the ideas flow smoothly from one to the next.


Azaab also utilize guest solos to add to the shredding climax of their best tracks. “The Infernal Citadel” features a guest part from Philippe Tougas of First Fragment, and the groovy “When Worlds Collide” centers on a solo from Bobby Koelble, who played guitar on a small underground album called Symbolic by Death. (You may have heard of it.)


Saad Latif’s vocals are characteristically old-school death metal, and their prominence in the mix also helps to keep the band sounding aggressive and brutal. My immediate thought was that he sounds exactly like Glen Benton. If you know me then you already know how I feel about Deicide, but in this case Saad’s vocals aren’t a detriment. I would have hoped for more variation, but he occasionally layers lows and highs to great effect. He mostly sits at a mid-pitch growl, which can grow a bit dull over time, but this allows the guitars to take the spotlight.


On the back of impressive riff writing, Azaab make a name for themselves with Summoning the Cataclysm. They’ve differentiated themselves in a way that lets them transcend being just “that death metal band from Pakistan”, and instead are a welcome addition to the world of death metal. Azaab don’t reinvent the wheel, but instead present a fresh and well-crafted collection of tunes certainly worth your time.





I honestly had no idea what to expect from a DM act based out of Pakistan (where? – Exactly!) Thankfully, this represents! It offers leads and solos aplenty, even flourishes of technicality. More than enough energy and exciting composition to keep one entertained for the duration.


Am I surprised? Hell yes, this fn’ rules! Don’t let that creepy looking skeletal dude put you off.





Following the release of two singles in 2017 and 2019, the Pakistani band Azaab are now on the verge of releasing their debut album, which bears the fitting title Summoning the Cataclysm — which is indeed what the band often do in their shifting amalgam of brutal, technical, melodic, and progressive death metal.


Their compositional and instrumental flair quickly becomes apparent, and so does the bestial hostility of the vocals. It’s a tribute to the talents of principal guitarist Shahab Khan and his Pakistani bandmates Waqar (bass), Afraz (guitar), and Saad (vocals), and to the lights-out performance of Indonesian drummer Adhytia Perkasa (from SiksaKubur).


And to add further reason to give the album a chance, it includes guest guitar solos by Bobby Koelble (ex-Death) and Phil Tougas (First Fragment), and guest vocals by Nick Mkhl (Brutal Sphere) and Aissam El Hassani (Vile Utopia).


Hopefully, what you’ve read so far has peaked your interest, but what will should really grab it is the song we’re premiering today, accompanied by a playthrough video that features the band’s dueling guitarists. It’s the explosive album closer, “B.L.O.O.D.B.O.R.N“.


This new song is a turbocharged onslaught that’s as electrifying as it is vicious. The rapidly changing riffs create sensations of seething, swarming, darting, and jolting mayhem, driven at a furious pace by battering, galloping, thundering, and blasting drumwork. At times the chords ring in dismal tones, feed like piranhas, and blaze like rockets, and the tempos reveal equally sharp shifts that will keep you on your toes, while the vocals are utterly ravenous.


But there’s still more going on in the song that adds to its multi-faceted and persistently thrilling appeal. In particular, the track is packed with fleet-fingered soloing that brings in scintillating melodies, and it’s a blast to watch the performers execute them in this video.


The album’s lyrical themes span topics such as horror, politics, human nature, the end of days, war and even sci-fi. The eye-catching cover art was created by Ardha Lepa.


Summoning the Cataclysm will be released on April 15th by Satanath Records and Maxima Music Pro. It’s recommended for fans of Morbid Angel, Vader, Death, Decapitated, Nile, Abysmal Dawn, and Cannibal Corpse.


We’re also including a stream of a previously released song called “The Infernal Citadel“, which features that guest guitar solo by Phil Tougas. It’s is a must-listen and a free download at Bandcamp.




Pakistani progressive death metal group Azaab will release the debut album is called Summoning The Cataclysm via Satanath Records and Maxima Music Pro on April 15th, 2022. I'm so excited to listen this album.


The album opens with Pandemonium Twilight, a sweet introduction that reveals the beauty and provides a warm up before Carbon Plague comes with a solid musical structure, the band tries to combine death metal with progressive elements and glorious melodies, which are executed to the fullest. I love its sharp guitar solos that arrives to slash us mercilessly with twisty melodies, then A Hollow Pact following with a neater musical structure, featuring crispy guitar riffs, solid vocals, and tight drums. While the fiery guitar solos burn us with a blazing melody and send us to the next track Preachers Of Hate, a song that accentuate a rotating melodies mixed with a very thick progressive seasoning, resulting in a very mature death metal dish that is ready to be devoured with great taste, before When Worlds Collide came with a heady beat, where they managed to weave technical, melodic, and progressive gracefully into a captivating composition over a dense death metal structure. The amazing guitar solos never cease to hypnotize us with beautiful notes until we are lulled by this indulgent temptation. The Infernal Citadel, a very captivating song featuring a heavier and denser structure that built by a series of tight guitar riffs, powerful vocals, solid bass, and energetic drums. This track also features guest musician Phil Tougas (First Fragment, Chthe'ilist, VoidCeremony, Atramentus, Funebrarum, etc) who fills the leads very beautiful, he mercilessly slashes us with a shredding lead which is greeted by a soaring guitar solo which is the best presentation on this album, then Trophies Of Flesh comes with an immersive intro, where melancholic guitar notes are knitted together with incredible bass, then exploded with furious vocals accompanied by a barrage of thick guitar riffs and powerful drums, while sharp guitar solos gripped us with cruel and intoxicating melody. The Empty Throne, a song from one of the death metal masters Decapitated, which is played very well and according to their style into a track that is no less cool and deserves to be enjoyed, before B.L.O.O.D.B.O.R.N arrived to close this album with a very aggressive structure, they launched a deadly attack with fast and precise guitar riffs, fierce vocals, solid drums, and heavy bass. Then a captivating guitar solo leads us to the end of this extraordinary show with complex satisfaction.


Summoning The Cataclysm is the dazzling debut album by a band from a country that is under-radar in the extreme music scene, particularly death metal. But that's not the limit for them to create a captivating music, on this album they offer a progressive death metal with an amazing melodic and technical touch that woven through a series of fast and complex guitar riffs, excellent bass, and energetic drums, along with powerful and solid vocals. The songwriting is enchanting with the incredible production. This is an extraordinary effort from a band that was able to hypnotize and steal my attention the first time I listen their material. A very fascinating album with a million surprising and promising flavors, it deserves to be examined and received more attention.





I have never come across a Pakistani Metal band ever. (Okay, maybe a few rock bands like Entity Paradigm in my teenage years!) But in the larger context, and myself getting more deep in the genre, coming across a band from Pakistan is rare. Thus when I finally got one from my promos - I had no chance to miss it. Azaab, a five- member death metal band from Karachi, who promises to deliver no less than face melting death metal are releasing their debut album “Summoning the Cataclysm” this April. They dropped the first single “The Infernal Citadel” and I am here to talk about it.

Starting off with middle-eastern phrygian based riff in the style of Melechesh, the song hooks you in for a ride, flowing directly into a brutal caveman styled riff of Hath and Old Opeth. With dissonance chord progression and few catchy riff phrasings aided by the groovy drums, it showcases a lethal mix of brutal death metal and old-school death metal. Even extra lead guitar layerings with pinched harmonics and short shred sections sound stellar.


Halfway through the song enters the guitar solo of Phil Tougas (First Fragment, Equipoise) with his signature tone and brings in total mayhem. For the outro, the song returns to its first riff with marching drums on top - coming a full circle and ending the way it started. 


The vocals with its growls, has an old-school death metal style with a coarse texture - aiding much in the overall sound of the song. The guitar showcases a wide range of inspiration through its riff-writing. The drums with its blast beats and double bass sound powerful and polished in the mix - bringing in the much needed heaviness and tightness. Overall, Azaab dropped a powerful single from their upcoming release. All we can do is anticipate what the album has to offer us!



Questo prossimo agosto saranno esattamente 22 anni che il sottoscritto ha come hobby primario quello di recensire dischi di Metal estremo; ed in tutti questi anni, andando a memoria, è la prima volta che mi capita per le mani una band proveniente dal Pakistan: si tratta degli Azaab, quintetto proveniente da Islamabad che con questo "Summoning the Cataclysm" arriva alla pubblicazione del primo full-length, grazie ad una co-produzione tra Satanath Records (etichetta che si è recentemente rilocata in Georgia) e Maxima Music Pro. E diciamolo, quella degli Azaab è stata una piacevolissima scoperta. "Death Metal" è anzitutto una forma semplificata di quello che la band pakistana propone, dato che come possiamo ascoltare nei brani presenti nella tracklist - otto inediti tra cui un'intro, ed una cover di "The Empty Throne" dei Decapitated - i Nostri spaziano con estrema fluidità tra Brutal Death, Progressive Death e Technical Death. Manco a dirlo i Decapitated dei primi lavori sono una delle primarie influenze degli Azaab, insieme ai Nile - abbastanza scontato anche questo forse -; ma la cosa che maggiormente sorprende e colpisce in "Summoning the Cataclysm" è la naturalezza con cui gli Azaab riescono a passare da riffoni pesanti e ricchi di groove, ad aperture melodiche e tecnicamente elevatissime, come se i Cannibal Corpse si fondessero con gli Obscura (e l'esempio più lampante è l'ottima "When Worlds Collide"). Ma non solo il succitato singolo: "The Infernal Citadel", "Preachers of Hate", "B.L.O.O.D.B.O.R.N", persino la cover di "The Empty Throne", tutto è perfettamente eseguito da una band che appare sin da questa prima opera in ottima forma, soprattutto la coppia d'asce formata da Shahab Khan ed Afraz Mamoon, senza nulla togliere agli altri ovviamente. Perfettamente a cavallo tra modernità e vecchia scuola, "Summoning the Cataclysm" è un album che saprà certamente sorprendervi in positivo: provare per credere (citando un vecchio spot).





Debut de esta banda de Pakistán, cuyo death metal pasa por momentos progresivos interesantes en "Summoning The Cataclysm" que tiene otra perspectiva en cuanto a producción, no cayendo en un estándar.




Azaab son: Saad Latif en voz, Waqar Ghayas en el bajo, Adhitya Perkasa en batería, Afraz Mamoon y Shahab Khan en guitarras. El arte de la portada fue hecho por Ardha Lepa.








En la música que presentan el death metal es la base y dentro de eso, la voz y los solos de guitarra (a veces predecibles y repetitivos en los arpegios) es lo mas resaltante, pero en estilos extremos lo que manda es la estructura de canciones, riffs y demás, no interesa si el baterista es un fuera de serie si los riffs son feos o no tienen nada. Aquí cada canción tiene buenos momentos, pero hay algunas como "Preachers of Hate" que es sin duda una buena canción en su totalidad, el resto tiene ese death metal ingeniado por Chuck en el "Human" de Death. La voz es gutural pero no tan distorsionada para el timbre grave que posee, lo que le da, dentro de su estilo, un toque personalizado. Otra que llama la atención es "Trophies of Flesh" tremenda canción, tiene de todo, fácil para ser un sencillo promocional. Cabe mencionar la performance de los otros músicos, destacándose en donde deben, como en algunos momentos del bajo y la batería del indonesio Perkasa que saca buenos ritmos y blast beats en partes que no la esperas, razón por la cual etiquetas a esta banda como progresiva.








"Summoning The Cataclysm" es un buen debut de Azaab, desde la producción, ejecución y varias canciones, esta banda tiene todo para seguir creciendo. Recomendado.





“Azaab” is an interesting word. Translated from Urdu, it means “torment” or “agony.” If that isn’t metal enough for you, the word itself sounds brutal; that harsh “z” consonant, violently squished between an unrelenting onslaught of vowels, all culminating with the unassuming but no doubt homicidal “b.” Ironically, Azaab is also the name of a death metal band hailing from Pakistan. This Islamabad-based five-piece just unleashed their debut album Summoning the Cataclysm upon an unsuspecting world; a world with plenty of metal detractors who would most assuredly call their sound “agonizing” or “torturous.” As for me, Azaab’s straightforward death metal assault, combined with techy flourishes and top-notch performances, is right up my (blood-soaked) alley. But with so many DM releases clogging the already festering AMG promo sump, can these newcomers set themselves apart?


When considering how to describe a band, one of the last places you should look is their promotional material; too many meaningless adjectives and even more false promises. However, eager to be the exception that proves the rule, Azaab‘s promo scribe was pretty spot on when they described the quintet as “straddling the grey areas between old school and technical, melodic and brutal.” Indeed, there are moments on Summoning the Cataclysm that sound like the latest in tech death wizardry, and there are others (often in the same song) where the caveman-riff has you more eager to clobber a fellow Neanderthal than analyze time signatures. And look no further than album opener “Pandemonium Twilight” for the perfect mix of melodic and brutal; just when you’ve ingested a dose of haunting synths and plaintive acoustic plucking, you’re hit with a wall of double bass and searing leads that rise to a mighty crescendo. If this all sounds like quite the oversell, it may very well be. But I’ve spent several weeks with this slab o’ Azaab and call me Jordy Verrill, because it’s grown on me.




By the time you’ve hit “Carbon Plague,” it might be too late for you, dear reader. In both theme and sound, Azaab’s Cattle Decapitation is showing, and if their take is somewhat more restrained, it’s no less brutal. Azaab has the good sense to kick off a majority of the songs on Summoning the Cataclysm with thick, chugging, pit-stoking riffs that ease you into the techy maelstrom to follow. “A Hollow Pact” and “Preachers of Hate” handle this transition perfectly, with their mosh-friendly intros giving way to a vibrant style of tech death that displays variety and virtuosity without sacrificing groove or accessibility. “Trophies of Flesh” injects some melancholic vibes to augment all the potent, barbarous proficiency, while mid-album tune “When Worlds Collide” whips some djenty, Meshuggah-esque syncopation our way. Not to be outdone, closer “B.L.O.O.D.B.O.R.N” wallops the listener with a taut, thrashy riff, unexpected tremolos and “Wykydtron” sci-fi. While there’s certainly a lot going on here, none of it feels superfluous or out of place.




At its most excessive and ineffective, tech death can jettison basic humanity in favor of soulless mechanical mastery. But Azaab have a secret weapon in their arsenal: guitar solos. It sounds like a no-brainer, especially for a technical DM band, but on Summoning the Cataclysm, the approach is more emotional than mathematical. On track after track and amidst the engaging ferocity, the guitars soar and emote, establishing an impassioned core within the general techy noodling. I don’t think I can overstate the effectiveness of this approach, and I wish more bands of their ilk would take a page from the Azaab playbook. Coupled with a tremendous drum sound (think taut, machine gun snares and explosive double bass) and vocals thankfully excavated from the middle of the mix, and I can’t help but love how this record feels and sounds.


I have gripes; we all have gripes. I think the Decapitation cover “The Empty Throne” is unnecessary and ill-fitting. I also have a minor issue with the fact that it takes repeated listens before some songs finally click. But these are minor and ultimately, the hard work of revisiting and replaying pays off. This is perhaps the most hopeful score I’ve ever given, even if it seems low compared to my laudatory language. And yet it’s nothing compared to the heights I expect this band to reach. So tuck into this slab o’ Azaab. You’ll be happy you did.





An earthquake of different influences blended together through proficient musicianship by an up-and-coming Pakistani Death Metal horde.




Formed in 2016 in Islamabad, the capital city of Pakistan, out of love for both old school and modern Death Metal, the up-and-coming five-piece horde known as Azaab (which is pronounced “aa-zaab” and translates roughly as “calamity”) is proudly unleashing upon humanity their excellent debut effort, entitled Summoning the Cataclysm, highly recommended for admirers of the music by Morbid Angel, Decapitated, Nile and Abysmal Dawn, among many more. Recorded, mixed and mastered by the band’s own guitarist Shahab Khan at Fractal Flow Studios, and displaying a demonic artwork by Ardha Lepa, Summoning the Cataclysm is an earthquake of different influences blended together through proficient musicianship by the aforementioned Shahab Khan on the guitars together with Saad Latif on vocals, Afraz Mamoon also on the guitars, Waqar Ghayas on bass and Adhytia Perkasa on drums, as well as a handful of guest musicians including former and current members from Death, Chthe’ilist, First Fragment and Worm, with the album’s lyrical themes spanning topics such as horror, politics, human nature, the end of days, war and even sci-fi.


The somber, acoustic guitars by Shahab and Afraz in the intro Pandemonium Twilight set the stage for Azaab to smash our senses in Carbon Plague, featuring additional vocals by guests Nick Mkhl (Brutal Sphere) and Aissam El Hassani (Vile Utopia), with Adhytia hammering his drums in the name of Death Metal while Saad roars deeply like an inhumane creature. More of their Technical and Progressive Death Metal is offered to us all in A Hollow Pact, where once again the band’s guitar duo extracts sheer electricity from their axes supported by the unstoppable bass jabs by Waqar, whereas Preachers of Hate is absolutely heavy and menacing from the very first second, with the guttural roars by Saad penetrating deep inside your mind mercilessly in a first-class fusion of modern-day Technical Death Metal with the band’s own Pakistani twist.


Featuring a sick guitar solo by guest Bobby Koelble (Death), it’s time for more savagery, gore and hatred by Azaab in When Worlds Collide, where Adhytia sounds infuriated behind his drum  accompanied by the always metallic bass by Waqar; and Shahab and Afraz deliver incendiary, crushing riffs in The Infernal Citadel, with a guitar solo by guest Phil Tougas (Chthe’ilist, First Fragment, Worm) this time, inviting us all to slam into the pit to their pulverizing Death Metal. Then a serene, acoustic intro explodes into sheer brutality in Trophies of Flesh, where all band members add tons of progressiveness to their core sonority, therefore turning it into the most intricate of all songs of the album. Azaab still have a lot of fuel to burn offering us all their venomous rendition for Decapitated’s The Empty Throne (check the original version HERE), showcasing an amazing job done by Saad on vocals, followed by B.L.O.O.D.B.O.R.N, a hellish, demolishing creation by the quintet with Adhytia sounding like a stone crusher on drums while Shahab and Afraz keep slashing our ears with their ass-kicking riffage and solos.


This unrelenting, vile horde hailing from Pakistan is waiting for you on Facebook and on Instagram to crush your senses with their top-of-the-line Death Metal, and of course if you want to show your total support to the underground you can purchase Summoning the Cataclysm from the band’s BandCamp page or from the Satanath Records’ BandCamp page (or click HERE for different locations where you can buy or stream the album). After all is said and done, Azaab were not joking when they said they had something for all types of Death Metal fans with their debut opus, as Summoning the Cataclysm indeed brings an amalgamation of elements from the past, present and future of Death Metal, all of course sounding very cohesive and as brutal as it can be for our total delight, positioning Azaab as one of the most interesting name of the Pakistani scene and, consequently, paving a fantastic road ahead of those death metallers.






Debut de esta banda de Pakistán, cuyo death metal pasa por momentos progresivos interesantes en "Summoning The Cataclysm" que tiene otra perspectiva en cuanto a producción, no cayendo en un estándar.


Azaab son: Saad Latif en voz, Waqar Ghayas en el bajo, Adhitya Perkasa en batería, Afraz Mamoon y Shahab Khan en guitarras. El arte de la portada fue hecho por Ardha Lepa.


En la música que presentan el death metal es la base y dentro de eso, la voz y los solos de guitarra (a veces predecibles y repetitivos en los arpegios) es lo mas resaltante, pero en estilos extremos lo que manda es la estructura de canciones, riffs y demás, no interesa si el baterista es un fuera de serie si los riffs son feos o no tienen nada. Aquí cada canción tiene buenos momentos, pero hay algunas como "Preachers of Hate" que es sin duda una buena canción en su totalidad, el resto tiene ese death metal ingeniado por Chuck en el "Human" de Death. La voz es gutural pero no tan distorsionada para el timbre grave que posee, lo que le da, dentro de su estilo, un toque personalizado. Otra que llama la atención es "Trophies of Flesh" tremenda canción, tiene de todo, fácil para ser un sencillo promocional. Cabe mencionar la performance de los otros músicos, destacándose en donde deben, como en algunos momentos del bajo y la batería del indonesio Perkasa que saca buenos ritmos y blast beats en partes que no la esperas, razón por la cual etiquetas a esta banda como progresiva.


"Summoning The Cataclysm" es un buen debut de Azaab, desde la producción, ejecución y varias canciones, esta banda tiene todo para seguir creciendo. Recomendado.





Geneticky upravená zvířata jsou známá už hodně dlouho. Jen se vše urychlilo. Navenek sice vypadá vše skvěle a dokonale, ale pod povrchem se ukrývají bestie vyšlechtěné k zabíjení. Lovit vyděšené nebožáky je přece tak zábavné. A všem je to úplně jedno. Občas se sice někdo ozve, ale jak známo, peníze nesmrdí. Pršelo a byla zima. Plot s ostnatým drátem mě sice rozdrásal do krve, ale zvládl jsem to. Už mi jdou ale stejně po stopě, cítím jejich smradlavý dech. Pach smrti. Je konec. Jsem další v řadě.


Pákistánští maniaci AZAAB působí také jako smečka rozzuřených psů. Za svůj styl si zvolili starý death metal, ale nebojí se ani lehké moderny. Výsledkem jejich snažení je první dlouhohrající album "Summoning the Cataclysm", které se dle mého opravdu povedlo. Je majestátní, zajímavé a dobře se poslouchá.


AZAAB se pohybují někde na území, jehož hranice kdysi vymezily kapely typu MORBID ANGEL, IMMOLATION, VADER, DECAPITATED, NILE, ABYSMAL DAWN, SUFFOCATION, DEEDS OF FLESH, CANNIBAL CORPSE. Technické kousky jsou vkládány v dobrém poměru, skladby jsou neotřelé, ale zároveň nenudí. Songy mají v sobě takový ten poctivý, drásavý účinek, jsou plné energie, pradávné síly, která by měla být vlastní každé dobré desce. Pákistánci hrají s lehkostí, samozřejmostí. Tohle umí jen dobří muzikanti, kteří dokáží zároveň i psát muziku. Přiznám se, že o kapele jsem vůbec nikdy předtím neslyšel, ale už z promo materiálů je cítit, že to se zabijáckými riffy, chorobným vokálem, masivním zvukem a spoustou dalších (ne)chutných ingrediencí, myslí kapela smrtelně vážně. U "Summoning the Cataclysm" je sice nutné trošku přemýšlet, dát nahrávce čas, ale rozhodně se vyplatí vydržet. Přiznám se, že jsem si desku brával dost často na dlouhé cesty a bylo hrozně příjemné sledovat naštvané obličeje lidí na ulici. Tohle je peklo jak má být! Mocné, zákeřné, které vám nedá nic zadarmo. Pokud máte tenhle styl rádi, dejte AZAAB určitě šanci. Možná se sice budete cítit jako lovená zvěř, ale to k tomu patří, jako pověstný zimník k mrtvému. Také slyšíte chvění, také se ohlížíte neustále za sebe? Masivní death metalové tsunami!


"Summoning the Cataclysm" je velmi propracovaným albem, čerpajícím ze základů death metalu v podobě v jaké ho kdysi hrávali třeba takoví MORBID ANGEL, IMMOLATION, VADER, DECAPITATED, NILE, ABYSMAL DAWN, SUFFOCATION, DEEDS OF FLESH, CANNIBAL CORPSE. Pánové se nebojí ani ledových melodií a jako celek mi album opravdu připomíná nějakou hodně zákeřnou a zlou nemoc. Hudba mi kroutí vnitřnostmi, tlačí mi na mozek, dělá se mnou věci, které jste možná zažili jen v těch nejděsivějších snech. Připadám si, jakoby mi kapela vymáchala obličej ve sražené krvi. Z desky je cítit pravá, ryzí oddanost death metalu. Potkává se zde realita s krutostí. Vše je zahrané s inteligencí, syrovostí a špínou ve skladbách. Tohle je obřad, k vyvolání samotné Smrti. AZAAB jsou metalový buldozer, který vám rozdrtí lebky! Velmi dobrá záležitost pro všechny fanoušky morbidní temnoty! Tohle je peklo jak má být! Mocné, zákeřné, které vám nedá nic zadarmo. Pokud máte tenhle styl rádi, dejte AZAAB určitě šanci. Možná se sice budete cítit jako lovená zvěř, ale to k tomu patří, jako pověstný zimník k mrtvému. Také slyšíte chvění, také se ohlížíte neustále za sebe? Masivní death metalové tsunami!


Asphyx says:


"Summoning the Cataclysm" is very worked on album. It is based on the death metal foundations – just like it was played by MORBID ANGEL, IMMOLATION, VADER, DECAPITATED, NILE, ABYSMAL DAWN, SUFFOCATION, DEEDS OF FLESH, CANNIBAL CORPSE. These gentlemen are not afraid to play cold melodies and as a whole the album reminds me very bad and evil disease. This music twists my bowels, pushes my brain and makes my body do thing you can only imagine in your worst nightmares. I feel like the band blew my face in blood. From this album you can feel a real, true devotion to death metal. Reality meets cruelty here. Everything is played with intelligence, rawness and dirtiness in those songs. This is a ceremony to invoke death itself. AZAAB are metal bulldozer that will crush your skull! Very good thing for all fans of morbid darkness! This is hell as it should be! Powerful, insidious that won't give you anything for free. If you like this style, be sure to give AZAAB a chance. You may feel like a hunted game, but that's part of it, like the famous winter to the dead. Do you also hear tremors, do you constantly look back? Massive death metal tsunami!




L’Homme est bien peu de chose. Une accumulation de sensations. La somme de ses désirs. La croyance de sa réalité. Alors chroniqueur, imaginez donc. Un frétillement à la lecture d’un nom, Azaab, des projections à l’évocation d’une origine géographique, le Pakistan, et un intense espoir à la lecture du genre : death metal.


Sans aucun doute, voilà le renouveau de death metal oriental. Tout du moins, à défaut de renouvellement, une bouffée de rythmiques si particulières de cet espace culturel au passé d’une richesse palpable. Qu’imaginais-je donc entendre ? Un Nile local ou du Narjahanam ? Plein la tête oui. C’est ce qui vous arrivera, vous en prendrez plein la gueule mais de tout ceci, que nenni. La gamme tonale arabo-indienne n’est absolument pas présente. À la place, vous mangez de plein fouet un death metal ultra puissant, brutal et parfaitement carré. Une réminiscence éblouissante de Decapitated pour tout écrire. Preuve en est cette reprise de "The Empty Throne" totalement à la hauteur de la référence. Car le groupe est assez monstrueux de précision dans sa violence, de hargne canalisée et d’envolées solitaires par les guitares. On se surprendrait à résumer Summoning the Cataclysm comme du guitar porn. Pour extrémistes avertis.


Impossible de nier la violence du propos, Azaab ne laisse jamais la place au doute dans son death metal brutal fortement imprégné de la scène polonaise. À tel point que sans indication préalable, il est impossible de deviner avoir à faire à un groupe pakistanais tant rien ne perce à travers l’épaisse couche nuageuse des riffs implacables constamment déversés dans nos cages à miel. Mange, digère, régurgite. Cet assaut constant ne masque toutefois pas la virtuosité des musiciens, et particulièrement des guitaristes foncièrement mis à l’honneur. La partie rythmique n'est toutefois franchement pas manchote. Les riffs deviennent dès lors un enchaînement dantesque d’accords enfilés telles des perles nacrées sur le collier de votre entendement. Pour mieux vous enserrer dans un maelstrom savamment orchestré. Seule l’intro finalement daigne accorder une once de douceur acoustique accompagnée de claviers emphatiques. Profitez bien de cette respiration. Ce sera la seule.


L’étouffement n’est pourtant pas la porte de sortie. Celle-ci s’ouvre par la lumière crue de la qualité des compositions, à un niveau gargantuesque le long des moins de quarante minutes qui défilent à toute berzingue. Chaos. K.O. Les Pakistanais affichent une maestria doublement détonante. D’une part, leur pays d’origine pas franchement à l’avant-front de la scène metal mondiale, bien malin celui qui pourrait en citer un grand nom. D’autre part vis-à-vis de leur jeunesse : il s’agit de leur premier putain d’album. Premier album ! Matez cette phrase et écoutez leur brûlot. Quelques dents vont tomber. Pour l’ensemble de l’audience du death, accueillez la réjouissance à la hauteur de sa déflagration. Oh bien sûr, n’en attendez pas une révolution de palais, Summoning the Cataclysm demeure fondamentalement classique. Par contre, un aboutissement de quarante années d’évolution, ça oui. Oh foutre dieu, ça fait du bien tant ça fait mal.


Fans en manque de Decapitated, celui des débuts, marquez cette sortie d’une pierre blanche, vous allez en prendre plein les oreilles. Des musiciens top niveau, une inspiration cinq étoiles, assurément une sortie majeure de l’année. Priez pour que ce ne soit que le début d’une longue domination.




Death metal and Pakistan may not seem to be immediately obvious bed fellows, but the more you think about it… the more it makes sense.


Azaab set the scene with an atmospheric intro that is melodic and foreboding. From there, you get vocals reminiscent of Glen Benton’s lower register, technical drumming courtesy of Indonesian Adhytia Perkasa and a real spread of death metal influences and approaches.


“Carbon Plague” blasts effectively, “A Hollow Pact” is a gnarled beast and the band show their slower chops with the doomy and deathly “Preachers of Hate”. There’s plenty of melody here, along with half stepping riffage the likes of which Morbid Angel applied in their slower moments- see “When Worlds Collide” for proof. Lovely lead guitar work here, too. The band have some great grooves and riffs up their sleeves and while the feel may be fairly old school, the sound is polished and ultra-modern- a killer combination.


“The Infernal Citadel” has a wonderfully evocative fantasy type title and the band run through some impressive chops while creating a great DM atmosphere. This could equally be applied to “Trophies of Flesh” which runs a wide range of death metal sounds- dreamy atmospherics, feral blasting and so on. It’s great stuff.


The band throw in “The Empty Throne” by deathly Poles Decapitated to give a hint of what they are aiming for overall and it is a solid track- well executed. “B.L.O.O.D.B.O.R.N.” finishes off this nine track feast of unearthly delights in style. This is a good death metal record which is thoroughly convincing throughout. Recommended for any fans of the genre.





Pakistan band Azaab are out with the album "Summoning the Cataclysm", and extreme metal is the style explored on this production. The specific take on the style here is one that appear to alternate quite a bit with thrash metal, with the tight, hard and intense extreme sections often dropping down into slightly slower paced chugging passages. The riffs are meaty and solid in all varieties, and the guitar solo runs alternates between being flowing and cutting, and in many instances taking on a form and delivery I'd describe as neo-classical oriented. The vocals are of the harsh variety, and other details of note are some gentler interludes and what sounds like very occasional inclusions of a token few symphonic elements. By and large an album I suspect will have a good appeal among those who enjoy extreme metal that drops down into a bit more of a thrash metal orientation from time to time.




When you think of Pakistan, it is probably unlikely that the first thing that comes to mind is bone-splintering death metal. Hoping to challenge that initial thoughtlessness and put their particular brand of howling brutality on the map are Islamabad’s very own AZAAB, who have recently released their debut album Summoning The Cataclysm.



Pandemonium Twilight almost lulls you into a false sense of security before these bone crunching blastbeats lurch into view. Swirling overhead like an ethereal miasma are some fairly fluffy keyboards. It makes for a nice intro, but Carbon Plague is the real mission statement. The riffs are engaging, theres an absolutely ripping solo about halfway through and the drum work is spot on. It’s aggressive and manages to scratch the old-school itch while also retaining modern production. Think if HAIL OF BULLETS were really mad about something.


A Hollow Pact Is a total pummeller. Machine-gun riffing bolstered by thunderous double kicks is arguably one of the best combinations that exists in any subgenre of heavy metal and this makes for a deeply satisfying example of it. It’s one of those rare tracks that just sits at the base of your neck and defies it not to move even a little bit. By this point, the listener may well be thinking that the best way that this band can be described is if Glen Benton and Trey Azagthoth had conspired to steal the rhythm section from BOLT THROWER in order to smash out loads of old SUFFOCATION covers. If that doesn’t immediately sell them, then this just might not be for you.




Turning to the album’s midriff, we find Preachers of Hate. Slightly more technical, but not in your usual virtuosity/vanity style, just cranking up the riff game into overdrive while simultaneously managing to keep them above the digestibility level of the usual technical noodle. What it is actually doing is ramping up to When Worlds Collide, which is testament to the band’s sheer ability to write riffs so nasty that there’s likely a cordon sanitaire around them. Not just content with playing host to some of the album’s standout riffs, here we also find some of the most formidable drum work across the whole runtime. It is very clear that not only is there an enormous amount of technical ability being bandied around here, but the members of AZAAB are so comfortable within their ability that they know their purpose is to serve the song, not to be carried away with showing off. It really shows and the music is all the better for it.


The Infernal Citadel is an absolute rager. It tears out of the gate and flies off with all the immediacy and vitriol of grapeshot from the mouth of a cannon. It simply does not let up for its entire runtime and even features a familiar face in the form of Phil Tougas of CHTHE’ILIST and FIRST FRAGMENT, who pours a white-hot solo into this already molten slab of death metal excellence. This could well be your pick of the album, even if it is up against some ludicrously stiff competition.


Trophies Of Flesh is another exercise in technicality without twisting into the territory of the overcomplicated. It is taut, well-played and masterfully constructed. They really know how and when to turn it on and when to pull back, which immediately puts them head and shoulders above an embarrassingly high number of their contemporaries.


Given the sharply apparent DECAPITATED influence present in AZAAB’s music, we should not be at all surprised at the appearance of a cover of The Empty Throne from 2004’s The Negation. It makes for a meatier tribute to what is clearly a mutual favourite track of theirs. In all honesty though, if you didn’t read the tracklist or weren’t familiar with DECAPITATED, you could be forgiven for thinking it was just one of AZAAB’s tracks due to how well it blends with their original material, and surely that’s the marker for a good cover, right?


Muscular closer B.L.O.O.D.B.O.R.N heralds its arrival with a howling thrash riff and keeps its foot firmly planted on the accelerator for the entire runtime. It’s one of those closers whose sole purpose is to hammer the point of the last 40 minutes home by battering you into a pulp, and in that endeavour it succeeds. More than that though, it leaves you thinking that Summoning The Cataclysm is an absolutely tremendous effort. Those of you who, much like the author, were completely ignorant about the metal scene in Pakistan before their initial exposure to AZAAB, will presumably, much like the author, now be total converts who will rush to explore more of what this area of the world can produce.