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Kill the King - 30%

doomknocker, March 12th, 2011

There has been much ado about this here Gorgoroth entity...much more than originally perceived (or wanted, for all I know). Not that it's not well deserved; after all, it's not every day that a second-generation act could burst from their anonymity and obscurity through a sense of originality and be able to rub elbows with some of their genre's most aristocratic lords. And, the way I see it, Gorgoroth did so, pushing forth through their influence-clad sleeves ("A Sorcery Written in Blood", "Pentagram") with acts of impure wickedness ("Antichrist") and near-perfect evil ("Under the Sign of Hell"). And when Nuclear Blast came a'callin', they came at us both confused ("Destroyer") and confusING ("Incipit Satan") before taking a small, 3 year hiatus to unleash their latest opus to our battered and bruised ear drums

And what a let down it was...

At first glance, it would appear that "Twilight of the Idols" is a bit of a tease; it opens so well with the excellently devastating "Procreating Satan", but then descends into a mediocrity that doesn't let up until the very last minute or so, to which I place the majority of the blame firmly on the lack of Infernus' compositional craft. It's pretty obvious that King (or King of Hell, or King ov Hell, or whatever), he of the Shagrath-like attention addiction, is nowhere near Infernus' songwriting echelon, and instead gives us the main bulk of the album as plodding, chunky, sextet-laden go-nowhere doom riffs and tripping-over-one's-own-feet drum work that does not hold the attention as well as I'm sure he would've wanted. Not quite as abysmally bad as "Ad Majorem Satanas Gloriem," his attempts to bludgeon us only mildly smacks us in the head and make us long for something else to happen before changing to the next track in frustration. And it doesn't get any better for the foreseeable future until the very end, the sole Infernus composition, which astonishes in its complex simplicity (strange how a guitar-only track has more moxie and ideas than the majority of the whole-band-made songs the rest of the album has). But perhaps I'm being a bit unfair...it's not entirely King's fault this album is such a mess, as other problems persist; the production is blurry, making it hard to decipher instrumentation and vocal work, Gaahl's screaming, growling, hollering, and overall vocal nonsensery seems barely in conjunction with the rest of the band (and replete with mistimings and errors), and the whole performance seems rushed and sloppily thrown together, as if the band wanted to get this over with before the impending prison sentences pushed the group into a forced sabbatical, giving us a less-than-stellar product that only serves to blight the mighty Gorgoroth name rather than make us aware of their continued presence. What few good songs are present, the aforementioned "Procreating Satan" and "Domine in Virtute tua Laebitur Rex", are still fine examples that warrant extra listens from time to time, but the rest of the songs, like "Proclaiming Mercy - Damaging Instinct of Man" and "Forces of Satan Storms", fall flat on their face so hard and so fast that they're not even worth repeated looks and listens.

So in the end, I've not heard an album so bland and slapped together in quite some time. It's a shame that a mighty band like Gorgoroth would excrete such a mess, but that may or may not have been their real intentions. Maybe if they put more effort into the arrangements and production values this could have been a fine album, but as it stands, this is a disgrace. Avoid and fall back on what made the band great in the first place.