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Bathory - Discography Review Part I - 89%

GermanSteel, May 1st, 2018

Since Bathory is my #1 favorite band, it's only appropriate that I review their entire discography right? What kind of fan would I be if I didn't? I will be reviewing every single full length album, each album is a "Part" of the review in it's entirety. Bathory is my favorite band, not only because Forsberg took influence from hardcore punk, but because I consider them to be the very first black metal band. Quorthon's vocal range is astounding and he was what I like to call the riffmaster of black metal, he was an astonishingly impressive multi-instrumentalist and overall musician with a way of certain progression of style. But, without further ado I present to you the first part of Bathory, the Discography Review!

This will be my first review of an entire discography, (at least on here). Let me start by saying, that for this time this album was fucking dark and evil, I mean hardly any music sounded this purposefully blasphemous and satanic in every way known to man, it was high octane, aggressive, heavy, raw, primitive and downright fucking crazy! This album draws a shit ton of inspiration from hardcore and speed metal elements. This album was released when the concept of black metal was first being developed by those of 80s death, thrash and speed metal bands. Although black metal wasn't really a genre back then, this album really laid down the foundation for what it would end up sounding like, at least upon it's first emergence. Bathory's self titled along with many other gems of the era were pretty controversial considering the satanic imagery and dark sounding music was unwelcome in many households, especially in highly religious families.

I will say this first, the album is not perfection by any means, no debut album is really perfect in any way. Although I love this band and their entire discography to death, this album is most definitely outshined by it's following releases. The album is beautifully aggressive and sick in it's own way, but there are some flaws, none that are really outstanding but there. The only issues I have with the release is the fact that it is a little bit monotonous at times, now I don't mind minimality with some bands but being that this is my absolute favorite I expect more. I listen to this album very often and I love it very much, but a lot of the songs have the same basic tone and feel like there is no variety, that could be just me when my mind is at rest but I honestly don't think it's that important.

Now, let's talk about the good things this album has to offer, which is a lot and really outweighs any negative things pertaining to the release. The album is fast, easy to listen to and any old school metal junkie pretty much falls head over heels for the sound. The feeling I get with this release and why I love it so damn much is because it was the absolute genesis to quite possibly the most amazing music genre known to man. The album cover is eye-catching, the gold color looks promising and the logo is beautifully drawn and completes the album cover. Once you start listening, you feel that certain chill that today's black metal gives off while still taking in the bone-crunching thrash sound, which is very fascinating.

I know that many people on this site absolutely despise black metal and probably Bathory, but even if you hate black metal with a burning passion, this album deserves massive amounts of credit and respect for influence on thrash as well as black metal. To discuss some of the track listings without doing track by track review I would just like to select a few highlight tracks that I consider to me my favorites out of the bunch. Hades : This track is simply GORGEOUS and really an excellent track for this album to open up with. This track really is a gem because it relates to the rest of the album almost perfectly and gets whoever is listening hooked!

The track draws you in in the first 10, no 5 seconds of the song and for any first time listeners it is a splendidly dark experience. Another great track is War, probably one of Bathory's more well-known songs, since many bands have covered it. It is both a popular choice and a dark masterpiece, Quorthon's vocals REALLY stand out and the instrumentation is simply phenomenal. My third highlight track is Raise The Dead, why you may ask? It's fucking psycho! This song really emphasizes the whole release and encapsulates what the record is in just a single 3 minute track, it is astounding how well done the track is produced and how the overall music sounds, that is why it is a highlight track.

As some additional thoughts on the album, I would like to discuss why out of all of Bathory's albums, this one is my LEAST favorite in the discography. This album had a lot going for it in 1984 and still does today, but I feel like the band got so much better as they went on, and their various influences on extreme metal have changed music forever. This album is my least favorite due to the fact it wasn't the first album of theirs I listened to. I started out on Bathory listening to Blood Fire Death, so at the time I wasn't paying much attention to it, after I listened to their debut drooling the entire time, I grew to love it, as well as fall in love with the band in general. What I really love about the album is that it isn't afraid to display the purest aggression humanly possible.

To wrap up the review I would like to give my respect to the remaining members of Bathory and an honourable rest in peace to Quorthon, who passed away when I was 4 years old. Part 2 is going to be on it's way, as soon as this review is approved.