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Many closeminded Darkthrone fans who hailed the "black metal trilogy" as absolute pinnacles of human achievement dwarfing even Metal Heart era Accept and Powerslave era Iron Maiden, as well as fellow contemporaries Emperor and Dissection, have also been quick to trash everything made since Panzerfaust.
Well, Plaguewielder isn't bad. It isn't good by any stretch of the imagination. It's noticably doomier than their past efforts, which gets plus points in my opinion, but it's darkthrone, and we all know Darkthrone never do anything resembling innovation. It's usually just something resembling 0-0-0-1-0-0-0-1-0-0-0-1-0-0-0-1 repeat. Basic 4/4 stuff. Plaguewielder is no different. Sure, the songs are longer. That does mean I have to listen to it more, which, knowing Darkthrone, is a bad thing. But the good thing is that the production is mellow enough that I don't have to really pay attention to them. The good thing is that these are probably the most listenable riffs Darkthrone has presented to us since Under a Funeral Moon. Let's face it, guys, neither Fenriz nor Nocturno Culto is Zephyrous, and it's Zephyrous that's written all the good Darkthrone riffs. That's why Transilvanian Hunger sucked (or at least part of it) and why Darkthrone have failed to come up with anything good after Panzerfaust, which was ok as well. Here, given Nocturno Culto's inability to come up with the thing known as "riffs", the riffs are comparitively good. Note, comparitively is the key word. They're still painfully average.
The drumming is mediocre, but Fenriz was never a good drummer, even on the album everybody said he drummed well on (Soulside Journey). However, I figure if anybody wanted quality music, they'd look elsewhere than Darkthrone.