Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2014
Encyclopaedia Metallum

Best viewed
without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
or higher.

Ugly and Raw - 80%

webermg, June 23rd, 2004

Ugly and raw. That's a succint description for Bathory's first full length release. It's a bit odd to call it "full length", since it lasts a mere 27 minutes. However, that 27 minutes is put to good use. It's historical significance can't be overstated, since this is basically where black metal took off.

What we have here is basically simple thrash. Simple, repetitive guitar riffs laid over simple, repetitive drum beats. The bass can be heard, but it doesn't do anything special. The vocals are sort of distorted, but not to the extent that you hear in newer black metal bands. The production is pretty basement-quality, but that's a good thing, the rawness gives it an out-of-control, unpredictable feel.

Many of the songs sound similar upon first listen, and even after the onset of familiarity, they still don't deviate too much. Raise the Dead is the exception, being much slower than all the others. Given this, it's hard to pick out highlights, but the first four songs are all excellent, with the aforementioned Raise the Dead and War also being very good. In truth though, there aren't any weak songs. The closest thing to a weak track is the too-long intro.

In sum, if you like dirty, raw thrash, you will like Bathory's s/t. If you like long, complex, bombastic songs, you had best look elsewhere.