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Positives for this release have to do musically, not lyrically. I think that the "raw" sound in the guitar category was quite suitable and translucent. Finally a Darkthrone release that doesn't flip me into the realms of oblivion musically speaking. For the most part, the vocals were quite odd and didn't exhibit much intensity as I've been accustomed to. These 2 guys put together some great guitar melodies both clean and crunch, not simultaneously, just overall. It makes the album easier to get into. The tempo changes aren't subtle, they really aren't exceptionally vast either. I found that the combination of the music, vocals, production and uncompromising guitar riffs seeded the album greatly.
Variety in the vocals make the music more simpler to really get into. I like the fact that they toned down some and aren't all about extreme aggression, they have evolved and this release is commendable. The leads however are quite distasteful, and a good thing that they're for the most part kept to a minimum. I think that if the band took out all of the lead guitar work, the overall album would be held in higher esteem from me. So that is the reason for taking off some points from the overall album. I dig the variety in the vocal department though. It's not just scream filled with high pitch ends to the core, it's highly varied and likeable.
The drums were right on key with the guitar riffs, though they weren't in the greatest in terms of technicality. It encompasses the "raw" sound, but the snare can be quite ignoble. Not to set a complaint in this department, it's quite an ignoble claim to make, yet we're looking at reality here. I mainly found the guitar concoctions to be the most excessive flowing of rich and fresh melodies. Total thrash sort of tone of the axe seemingly falling into a blackened/thrash sort release kind of in the vein of Devian (RIP). Every track on this album contains a variety in the vocal department. Nothing really THAT brutal in terms of hoarse sound, some of it is actual "singing."
Definitely one of the top albums of 2013 in metal at least. A lot of originality in songwriting style and an album that's not filled with just blast beating galore like a lot of bands nowadays. Seems to drown out the music, those kind of bands at least. However, I'm just saying in general that they've worked hard on composition, something fresh and a great overall sound in the recording. Things seemed to flow on this one, with no things out of balance in terms of tempo changes, vocals and "raw" sound. Amazing that only 2 members for the band that really created something pretty monumental.
If you haven't heard any tracks off of this one, then utilize YouTube and see if there are any songs available before you go out and buy the album. But I'm supremely confident that on multiple listens and insight into the album labeling the peaks and valleys to the release. I'd say that overall, that this is an album not to miss out on. Definitely one that will blow your hair back. Best not to focus on the lyrics to this album since they aren't very strong in that department. I think that if they put a lot of emphasis on their writings, it would be more savvy to my palette. But the music is just outstanding! Get it ASAP!