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This is kind of Bathorys comeback album since Quorthon intended Twilight Of The Gods to be Bathorys last album. But after doing his side-project album he regained his will to continue with Bathory, resulting in 3 new Bathory albums within 1,5 years!
This album entitled "Requiem" was meet with alot of criticism, I think the reasons for that are quite obvious: Very bad production and poor vocal perfomance. And I must admit that I too thought this was simply terrible when I first popped it in my CD-player. But beneath the terrible production & vocal perfomance there is quality stuff to be found. The opening title-track begins with an intro that reminds me of something out of "Under The Sign Of The Black Mark", but as soon as the guitars kicks in its obvious that this was gonna be a thrash album. The build up riffs sounds like something that Slayer would have done back in the day. Not a bad way to open up the album at all! But the true highlights of the album lies in the second half of the album. Blood And Soil immediatetly grabs your attention with its heavy riffs and Suffocate, Distinguish To Kill & Apocalypse all contains killer thrash-riffs that have been sadly overlooked. War Machine & Pax Vobiscum got its moments too, decent but not that good either. Same goes for Crosstitution but that one took some time for me to appriciate. Achully, the only track I think is completely crap here is Necroticus, that one still only ring annoyance in my ears. But my favorite must be Distinguish To Kill with its speed, great riffing and Quorthons sick-sounding vocals!
If this album was recorded by, lets say Destruction or Sodom it would have been an awesome album! Or if Quorthon would have given this album the same treatment as Blood Fire Death in production & vocals it would have been great! In my opinion this is still Bathorys third worst album but I still think its a good album non the less, the production & vocal perfomance do wear it down but the songs are still strong. And after all, isn't that the most important thing?
So if you think you can listen & enjoy an album beyond the shallowness of production & vocal perfomance then give this album a couple of tries (it deserves it). But if you haven't heard much of Bathory I suggest you begin checking out their first 5 before you try anything els.
One strange note on this album is that the track-list on the back of the CD is in alphabetical order, makes no sence to me why anyone would do this. Strange but ahwell...
Overall its a good album but it got its flaws.
Killer songs: Blood And Soil, Suffocate, Distinguish To Kill, Apocalypse & the title track