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Fairly Frozen - 75%

Sick6Six, April 7th, 2014

Permafrost is a band that seems to be almost completely overlooked by even the most diehard black metal fans. Their releases have been quite solid ever since their second album "Vergewaltigt & Verflucht" but "Devil Worship" is a major improvement especially in song structure and complexity. Their previous albums were built upon simple riffs consisting of just a few chords repeated throughout most of the songs, but the riffs were so good that they didn't get old. This album in part follows their traditional style, but they have added a lot of different elements to break up the danger of becoming monotonous.

The lead guitar work really stands out and differs from the main riffs where their older albums could have mostly been played with just one guitar. There are sections that feature a more classical wailing guitar style with a few frozen solos that create an extra dimension to otherwise standard black metal. Songs have more variety instead of just one or two riffs the entire time with some grinding breakdowns and gradually increasing tempos. Permafrost is a fitting name for how the band sounds because they always have a sharp, icy cold production.

For the most part the music is incredibly catchy, straightforward black metal that is mostly tremolo picked and blasted along. There are sludgier moments including a badass bass riff in the first song. A few songs kind of build up throughout and wait until the end to unleash the full fury. Their vocals have always been a menacing hate filled scream which includes many drawn out screams of rage. They have toned down the vocals a bit on this release to just minor insanity, although I did kind of enjoy some of the maniacal laughter to be found on previous work.

The only shortcomings of this album are the GG Allin cover which to me is just an annoying way of telling me the album is over and I have to press stop or endure the ear pain. The 8th and longest song on the album is more of a cool down song with some weird heavy breathing to start, but it's actually a pretty excellent mid-paced song, however the first 7 songs are really where it's at and they go by a little to quickly.

If you've never heard Permafrost and are looking for something new and pretty darn good then check this album out. If you happened to hear their earlier work then you will definitely notice this is a big step up.