mantar completely came out of the blue when i bought their debut record two years ago. this band had something to it. mystical artwork, dark image and a nihilistic lyric approach appealed to me. the special thing about them is that mantar consists of only two members and while i loved the recorded tunes on 'death by burning', i was a little sceptical if they could deliver playing live the same way as on record.
fortunately i saw them on the wacken open air last year and boy, next to biohazard they have been my favourite band at the festival. they started with loads of feedback noise and blended directly into 'the berserker's path'. atmosphere was heating up and as soon as bare-chested guitarist and singer hanno was climbing up some pretty high speaker tower and started palying on this unsteady pile of megaphones, people were getting crazy.
it was a real intense live set and from that time on i was convinced to one hundred percent of this two-piece, called mantar (which seems to be turkish for mushroom). sometime last year they announced a record deal with nuclear blast and follow up release to 'death by burning' in early 2016. fast forward to april this year and pre-orders went up with me jumping at it. now the vinyl arrived and i had a couple of listens.
first of all, it was worth the wait. mantar doesn't disappoint. if it's better than the first record? i don't know yet and this is personal opinion anyway. what 'ode to the flame' definitely is? it is a quality blackened stoner metal record. everyone who enjoyed the first shot will find a new kick of the same drug dropping the needle on a physical copy. the artwork is simple but striking. black matte card with golden foil ink on front and back, nice inner gatefold artwork and 180gr gold vinyl. ace! 1000 copies made. nuclear blast. 2016.