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A nice follow-up - 95%

KayTeeBee, February 23rd, 2005

Malleus Maleficarum returns in 2004 with their second album, called "Des Bibles, Des Hymnes, Des Icônes...". If you've heard their first album, then you probably know that MM plays straightforward raw black metal, with no strings attached. I couldn't get enough of their first album because the riffs were so fucking heavy and brutal, and because it just made me want to headbang from start to end. I really didn't expect this album to be better, but alas, I was wrong. Malleus Maleficarum gives us a somewhat rawer album this time around, and they still have the good old brutal and raw riffs, without forgetting the outstanding vocal performance by Tamas.

The first thing you'll notice with this album is that the production feels like more work was put into it. I could tell that as soon as "Souffre En Silence" started, the kick-off title. The snares and hi-hats have a quite unique sound too, but the toms' sound remains the same. There's nothing I love more than a raw up-beat riff with unique production, and with the most agressive vocals i've had the pleasure of hearing in a while. Anyways, if you've already heard the first album, you know what to expect.

A song that caught my attention was "Ballet Mortuaire". It starts with a slow but threatening mid-tempo riffs, with agressive drums and some very, very hateful vocals. Then at 1:00, that's where the meat comes in. Same vocals, same drums, but the riff that comes in is simply amazing. That's what I especially like about this band: not only can they make straightforward up-beat songs, they can also make slow build-ups.

For those of you who had heard the first MM album, then you know what to expect, and if it's your first time listening to this band, you'll be enjoying yourself as much. Very highly recommended.