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Synagoga Satanae, Rise!!! - 95%

Blacklinkz, January 13th, 2008

Celtic Frost...

A band that broke the boundaries of metal and helped to create both extreme metal and avant-garde metal (and 'darky' glam rock). They were a great influence also to gothic/symphonic metal. It's simple: without this band, Metal wouldn't be what it is today.

So, here is their latest release (and comeback album): Monotheist. Flamed by some people for not being ´Morbid Tales Chap. 2' or 'To Mega Therion II', yet, for me, it is a fucking great album, and one of the best comeback albums I've listened to.

It starts off with 'Progeny', mid-paced, yet a little faster than other songs, with really huge riffs. It reminds of Hellhammer in the tone of the guitar and the raw distortion. Then it comes 'Ground', slower, with only 4 short riffs being repeated again and again, yet sounding great and heavy. It also has some vocals and guitars effects that add diversity to the song.

Then, we have a section of almost purely atmospheric songs. The album's only single, 'A Dying God Coming into Human Flesh', has one of the most simple yet most efficient melodies Celtic Frost have ever written. It somehow reminds me of what the melodies in 'Sorrows of the Moon' where in their time: simple, beautiful, and really dark. Also, the vocals of Martin Eric Ain are truly a plus to the song. 'Drown in Ashes' is a really good song, yet it has not too much to offer. Just Lisa and Tom singing with some backing samplers. 'Os Abysmi vel Daath' is good, but kinf od misplaced in the middle of a really soft, atmospheric section. 'Obscured' is very much like 'Drown in Ashes', just longer and thousand times better in instrumentation. Here there are much more guitars and percussion, and the intensity of the track keeps growing until the end.

'Domain of Decay' is another great tune. Fast and aggressive, yet again it’s a couple of riffs being repeated over and over, with effects to add variety. 'Ain Elohim' is just great, faster and more complex than other songs, it evocates much more aggression. The drum work really shines here, with double-bass and some occasional blastbeats here and there. It's one of the longest songs in the album, yet it doesn't become boring. The riffs are more complex and longer, and the vocals fit perfectly.

Now, the Triptych. 'Totengott' is kind of a bridge between 'Ain Elohim' and the rest of the Triptych. But what a scary bridge! It is dark as hell, with Ain's vocals sounding louder and painful. The programming and sampler effects create a dark atmosphere that may scare the grimmest 'kvlt' kid.

'SYNAGOGA SATANAE!!!'... What can I say about it? It's just one of the best songs ever written in Celtic Frost's career... and maybe even in the history of extreme metal. 14 epic minutes of pure fucking blasphemy and darkness!. It starts with percussions and noise, the real song kicks in as powerful as it is. I just can't explain this song with words. You'll have to hear it to believe what I tell you. I hope you get so impressed as I got when hearing Tom and Co. screaming:

"Rise! Synagoga Satanae...
Lies! Lucifuge Rofocale"

Or in the chorus:

"In Darkness, thou art mine eternally!"

The final track, the long awaited 'Winter (Requiem, Chapter Three: Finale) is the concluding part of 'Rex Irae' from 'Into the Pandemonium'. It is a instrumental piece that spawns from the final notes of 'Synagoga Satanae', and it's oddly beautiful; good closer. This is by all means a great album, even if you are not yet a Celtic Frost fan (which is a weird thing, per se). A must have if you like dark and heavy music.