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It is of course unnecessary to stress the fact that the Black Metal scene has always brought forth violent and hateful individuals. But like so many others I thought that these things belonged to the murky depths of the 1990s. I was proven wrong when reports of “torture like violence” and “attempted manslaughter” reached me from (the now defunct) www.gorgoroth.com and other sources. Ghaal, the new vocalist, who had so brilliantly pushed Gorgoroth into the right direction music wise on the milestone “Destroyer”, had been arrested for acts of blind and furious violence. Knowing that a new album was under construction for several months and not wanting to wait too long for a follow up to the admirable “Incipit Satan” I kept my fingers crossed (upside down of course!). Hoping for a glitch in the Justice Department’s paperwork or some other technicality that could send this undoubtedly guilty demon back to the studio to finish what was started prior to his arrest.
And Lo and Behold! My prayers were answered!
And so it came to pass that the mighty Gorgoroth shat its latest piece of unholy excrement onto an ever unsuspecting world. And, oh fucking hell, what a caustic and spiteful piece of work it has become! Musically speaking you pretty much know what to expect and I won’t waste time by explaining to the ignorant the merits and prowess of TRUE NORGEWIAN BLACK METAL. From the fast opener “Procreating Satan” through the blindingly hypnotic “Teethgrinding” to the haunting outro “Domine in Virtute tua Laetabitur Rex” you’re being treated on the un-holiest of the unholy, the pinnacle of irreverence and absolute Darkness and Hate.
The sound reminds me of “Destroyer” in the sense of distortion and harmonic effects, but it’s certainly a bit “cleaner”. Still way to rough for the average “Dimmu Burger” fan though... The greatest improvement as opposed to other albums is the diversity of the vocals and the use of effects on them.
My only lament with this piece of art is the fact that it’s only 32 minutes short and with Ghaal probably heading for probation or perhaps jail there’s no saying how long it will take for the next album to see the light of day.
With Gorgoroth being one of the very few bands to actually still be playing Black Metal in this manner I’d say that it’s rightly time for someone to pronounce them the Kings of Black Metal! Let it be me!
(This review was originally written for http://www.lordsofmetal.nl and is republished with kind permission of the webmaster)