Pavor is a band that has dwelt in the periphery of the death metal genre for almost 20 years, a brilliantly talented yet extremely reclusive group of basement-dwelling German Hessians with chops aplenty and compositional skills to spare. They have never sought any sort of recognition, shunning the idea of record labels or artwork altogether and preferring, instead, to let the music speak for itself. And while such taciturn virtuosity might seem pretentious or even foolish in most cases, I must admit: These guys deserve to do whatever the fuck they want. This shit is AMAZING.
Musically speaking, Pavor stands head and shoulders above all challengers, whether it be in 1994 or 2009. The curious use of the bass as a lead instrument is what really sets Pavor apart, and the fluid riffs and off-key noodlings provided by Rainer Landfermann (who composes Pavor's music as well and also used to play in Bethlehem) are unbelievable. But the bass is by no means the only instrument doing something strange. The drums are rock solid, alternately blasting, galloping, and grinding to a halt, while the guitar staggers along on a strange mix of unexpected chord structures, screeching solos, and weird dynamics.
Despite a smattering of demos and other assorted detritus, the only other full-length Pavor album was Furioso, released almost a full decade later without fanfare, publicity, or any kind of promotion. It, too, speaks for itself. Expect to see it here on I.C. sometime in the near future.
Pavor fan page
PS: Thanks to Illogical Bro TMM for introducing me to Pavor in the first place. Awesome stuff.