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As the previous few reviewers will likely tell you, it's pretty much completely impossible not to mention Celtic Frost every time you pick up the keyboard and try writing a few words on this very cool, very underrated, very celtic frost slab of celtic frost celtic frost celtic frost, er, cool dutch doom/death album.
It's cool in that while the swiss aesthetics are there (ugly riffs, total disregard for melody), the songwriting that so many frost-ish bands lack is also there in full swing. Tension's always thick in the air (that weird, high pitched breakdown in Bitch), tempo changes come in when they should, basically you just never get bored. I like how things like lead guitar and really, really slow doom bits (Amputation) are more of an exclamation mark than something that becomes staid and boring. There's a tendency towards thrash parts -everywhere the frost love really comes through- such as the very cool and surprisingly accessible title track. It'd be cool if shit got really fast occaisonally and it's a shame it never really happens; can't really complain though. These guys do anywhere up to maybe 160 bpm really well; a lot of bands can't get a single tempo/feel right! Maybe it never reaches neck breaking speeds but there's plenty of fresh parts on offer here; a fascinating variety of ugly, chunky, misshapen riffs.
That frostian riffing style aside, the production's the other big thing here. It's not bad; dank, dirty, real cavernous; rather unique, just that the guitar needs to be louder! The rough, reverb tinged vocals - I definitely get the feeling that if they were less aggressive and more Warrior-esque no one would call this death doom and it would just be straight out "Celtic Frost tribute", but no matter- and cavernous, not-good-sounding-but-perfect-for-the-album drums are great, just the guitar and bass have to be turned up. It's some what weird how a lot of very early death doom has real thin guitars; you'd think that'd be the main priority for the people recording this? Ultimately this didn't really make the album any less enjoyable; it still crushes, still thick as molasses, but.. yeah. What mighta been, I guess.
Overall this is a simple, really enjoyable album. Uglier than the back of your knee, heavier than a pineapple the size of a small yacht. Well arranged, well put together. Worth checking out!