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Complete underpants - 35%

mad_submarine, June 29th, 2014

For a starter, I want to underline that I've never been a big Kreator fan like the many reviewing their albums. They are probably one of the very few "big" bands in thrash that have never been among the bands I'd regularly listen to, in any period of my life or their discography. However, I've always recognised their former albums and as much as I am not a fan of Mille's voice, I've recognised the quality of the early works and the significance they have for the scene.

To the point. Phantom Antichrist can make even the very melodic sellouts in Nuclear Blast's catalogue giggle. Its attitude is ultra childish and I cannot see any sympathy or interest that it could possibly evoke in an extreme fan whatsoever, unless you're a die hard Kreator fan who listens to it from nostalgia or whatever feeling. If you think I am exaggerating, go check the lyrics - no need for me to quote, you can see yourself that they are targeted towards fourteen year old children with yet not very strong perceptions about metal.

Most songs sound like the band has tried very very intentionally to make them epic. It's even worse than Manowar's attempts to play cool and majestic these days. You're supposed to "march towards the fire" and sing along with a thousand other voices and this kind of jazz. Most songs are probably intended to be big stadium hits, sang by huge escalated crowds. As you can probably imagine, this effect is missing, at least on me.

Another problem is the guitar sound and the overall production, nothing raw left, all instruments sound like being laid in a crystal clear studio and fixed and it is just the modern production targeted for the massive audience rather than an extreme fan. Not that the latest Kreator albums show a big deviation, therefore you shouldn't be surprised in any way. At least some modern melodic death metal bands have conserved some of their anger and energy. While Phantom Antichrist is just so 'plastic, lame and weak', that I can't even be bothered to move some muscles on my face and frown. It's just "meh". Yes, generic - that's the perfect adjective to describe it.

The riffs itself are not especially thrashy and the style of this band is more like super overproduced melodic death/epic metal rather than thrash. Like very cheesy Arch Enemy (not that I have bothered to check their latest effort). And if that has not yet sealed the deal for you, there are several times on this record when you can hear Mille attempt clear singing. It's not bad from a musical point I guess, but I believe its place is not in a thrash album. The musicianship of course is very good and this is totally not my point. The band present here is Kreator, of course they would be good musicians. The problem is that the final product is just very generic and left me personally with a headache rather than an elevated spirit.