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A Tzompantli, in bygone days, was a rack used to display human skulls, often of enemies or sacrifices, in several Mesoamerican civilizations. In 2022, Tzompantli is a beyond-crushing death doom war march built on a bedrock of Native / Indigenous themes, rituals and history, illuminating the splendor, brutality and despair within. Nearly three years after the band’s self-released EP, Tzompantli’s debut full length presents the first smoke-conjured specter to manifest materially. Tlazcaltiliztli, a ritual ceremony that translates to “nourishing the fire and sun with blood”, is imbued with the spirit of Native inspiration that dwells deep within the heart and soul of the project and is skillfully weaved into a traditional bludgeoning framework of spine-severing savagery and melancholic anguish. On the ritualistic “Eltequi” (to cut the chest open and extract the heart as an offering) the band’s unification of native / folk instrumentation and heaviness becomes one in the same, opening vast new horizons for where this sound can go. Tlazcaltiliztli is dedicated, and an offering, to the indigenous peoples, nations and tribes of the North, South, East and West of the American continents. It marks a fearsome and spirited new vision for the death metal underground.