It might seem hard to imagine now, but at one time metal and punk represented very separate camps. Musically speaking, of course, the two styles lent themselves to integration and began combining from the very start. And thank God, because today a group like Occultist can embrace a smorgasbord of forms that in the past were defined by rigid sectarian divisions. Occultist draws freely from crust punk, black metal, grindcore, thrash, crossover thrashcore, doom — all subgenres that owe their existence to hybridization to begin with. Crust punk’s political edge may have once stood at odds with Occultist’s satanic fixations, but the Richmond, Va., quintet capitalizes on the sincerity of the former without losing the theatricality of the latter. In fact, Occultist plays with such passionate fervor that it stands out — even three decades after likeminded bands paved the way.