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The merger between black and thrash metal is a major component of modern dark metal. This phenomenon is partly explained by the search for rawer sound and attitude, but also because many black metal musicians grew up listening to bands like Anthrax, Slayer and Testament. When the merger is well executed, we can hear a wild combination of dynamic/rhythmic riff-based thrash and dark decadent atmosphere of black metal. When it is missed, it gives the new album of the Swedish band Craft.
Void is Craft’s fourth album, a band known for its nihilistic approach and its lo-fi black thrash, but six years are separating this sequel from Fuck the Universe, released in 2005. I do not know what band members did during this quiet period, but it had certainly not much impact on song writing quality. Several good riffs can sometimes be heard, notably on Serpent Soul, The Ground Surrenders or I Want to Commit Murder, but too often, songs are slowing down, looping or becoming hopelessly repetitive. For once, I was really annoyed by an album, as it felts lazy and not done carefully. It is even more shocking when we think about Craft musicians' experience and knowledge (including the main songwriter, who has played in Shining).
Craft surely wishes to regain its footing in the world of black metal after a long hiatus, but it is certainly not with this album that it will be achieved. 3/10
Originally written for Métal Obscur.