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This album is such a masterpiece, one of my favorites I reckon. The harsh riffs full of hatred create an outstanding atmosphere along with the intense shrieking vocals. The bass lines, although not clearly, are heard on this album and the drums' blast beats just keep getting better.
The lyrical themes are clearly depressive and longing for death as well as misanthropic. 'Praise Suicide' is a hell of a song followed by 'Ridding a Pest', which show power and human mockery. 'Ildjarn' is the only song on the album that included shrieks as well as clean vocals.
'Vanmakt' and 'Horns' are another two songs on the album where the guitar riffs and the blast beats are so majestically combined, creating the raw atmosphere of the typical Blodsrit. Finally comes 'Solitude', originally by Candlemass. This is a really good cover indeed. Swallow The Sun and French symphonic black metal band Anorexia Nervosa did a good job covering this, but wasn't as blackened and effective as Blodsrit's.
The production and mixing are fine. The cover art is truly amazing and melancholic. Clearly this album is flawless and deserves an ear by any metalhead who's into black metal.
Blodsrit are one of those bands that have been flying under the radar for some time. But these guys make some very amazing black metal; brutal, intense, aggressive, melodic and just all out ass kicking. I love these guys. They've made great albums in the past, and this latest one is no exception. We're treated to 40+ minutes of anger and hate combined with melody and emotion... not to mention a black metal cover of Candlemass's hit, Solitude.
These guys know exactly how to make ferocious black metal and they do it quite well. The first time I listened to this album, I sat there thinking, "What am I listening to?" Then as I kept going along, I got more and more into it. By the end I didn't want it to stop, so I played it all over again. The second time around I was completely hooked on this album. This is just a very well done album with a pretty good production quality. It could be a little better, but it's not to the point where you can't distinguish each instrument. But it doesn't have that over polished sound either. It's a nice mix and creates a good black metal feeling.
I love how these guys can go in different directions with their music at the drop of a hat. They could be playing a fucking fast riff with great blast beats, then all of a sudden, they just take a 180 degree turn and start playing some melodic riff, and they even throw clean vocals in too! Most notably in the song Illdjarn.
The guitars on this album are great. They're pretty well typical black metal riffs, with the usual tremolo picked passages, but they stand out on this album really well. Even the melodies they use are very well done too. There isn’t a great deal of leads or solos on this album, but that's okay because everything else this album offers makes up for it. Don't get me wrong, the leads are there in some songs, and they are good, but personally, with the aggression and intensity I really don't think they'd need them. But they are welcomed nonetheless.
On this album, compared to some other black metal albums, you can actually hear the bass too! It was mixed in well with the other instruments. It's not overbearing and it's not non-existent. It's good. There's no incredibly technical riffs played with it to make it stand out or anything. It's just in the background, playing along with the rhythm of the songs. It's actually a refreshing thing to hear bass in black metal because as you all know, a lot of bands use a lot of treble and have absolutely no low end to their music. It's not the case with these guys.
The drums on this album are one of the two things that stick out for me. They are pretty technical and can be a little overpowering at times, but it's fine. I'm not a huge fan of technical drumming, or over drumming, but the drums on this album kick my ass over and over again. The blast beats are incredible. They're on every song, regardless. This also helps add to that aggressive and ferocious feeling this album gives you. Definite standout element on this album. The drums during the melodic parts are also very good too. I just love it!
Then we come to the vocals. The vocals are what I love most on this album. Awesome black metal screeches all over the fucking place. I've always liked this element about Blodsrit. I think they have one of the better black metal vocalists in the genre. It's not because he does different things with his voice, but it's because he just screeches his ass off in every song, very impressive. I find some bands' vocalists are very weak and try to change their vocals to save on themselves (Most notably, Shagrath from Dimmu Borgir). But not here... it's all balls out screaming. I love it!
Then on one song on this album, we also get treated to something completely unexpected. After 6 songs of ass kicking goodness and ferocious screams, we're treated with CLEAN VOCALS! What the fuck? Where did they come from? This is what I was talking about earlier when they change direction in their songs. Illdjarn is song where this is noticeable. They start off with some awesome black metal riffs with good blast beats. They slow it up a bit, playing a little more melodically, but still amazing. Then like 2 minutes into the song, during one of the best melodic riffs I've ever heard, there are clean vocals, out of NOWHERE! The first time I heard it, I was like HOLY FUCK! I was shocked beyond belief. I did not expect to hear that. But the thing was, I liked it. I liked it a lot. I instantly deemed Illdjarn as my favorite song on this album. I know a lof of people aren't fans of clean vocals and such, but I, for one, would actually like to hear more clean vocals in these guys' music. I think the clean vocals are just amazing on that song. Then before you know it, it's over. Such a shame.
But that's okay, because their cover of Candlemass's Solitude is next. Very well done. I had heard Anorexia Nervosa cover the song, but wasn't overly impressed by it. They never really turned it into a black metal song. But Blodrsit... wow. They did it, and they did it well! Easily my second favorite track on this album.
The only real problem I have with this album is that’s it too short. There are no musical flaws or production flaws or anything. The music is outstanding and just worth listening to. But, it needs more songs. When you really get into this album (and you will…) the time will go by like nothing. Other than that, this is a perfect example of how intense black metal can be.
These guys have been very consistent over their career, releasing great album after another. Helveteshymner is no exception. This album is mind blowing. Definitely something to check into if you're a black metal fan. This album is one of my favorite realeses of 2004! If you're looking for intense, aggressive black metal, look no further!