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This is how a live album should sound - 88%

stickyshooZ, May 19th, 2004

Every time I listen to this, I remember more and more how much of a bad ass singer Dead was. This live recording shows Dead in his prime. Instead of taking the path of the generic black metal screams, Dead takes the guttural, vomit inducing, and gut churning growling. This style makes it much easier to try to decipher the lyrics without losing its kick and brutality on this live recording. It's debatable on whether or not Dead was the ultimate black metal singer - that’s up for each person to decide but personally I think he ranks high up there.

This is how a live album SHOULD sound - no editing, no dubbing, just live music. Although the drums sometimes dominate the music and make some instruments less audible, the music still stays on track and doesn't relent it's heavy and atmospheric assault. The bass isn't exactly out there, it's heavily distorted and fuzzy, but if you listen closely to the mix you can notice the pushy edge that it gives to the music. The guitar is meaty, heavy with slippery and slimy sounds to it. If you could turn the guitar sound into any material object it would be a piece of thick slime oozing down a clean wall.

Sure, there are some mess-ups here and there on some songs (tempo on "Deathcrush" for example) but that can be expected when any artist performs live. Generally, I don't think one would really be bothered by the mess-ups, most of them are very minor (tempo mistakes here and there, etc.) and the songs are still played in excellent fashion. Most of Mayhem's classic songs are played here and makes it worth your money to have an almost perfect set list for a Mayhem concert and listen to it live over and over again. The atmosphere of this live album is truly live and not messed around with. You can hear the crowd, feel the poor production, and such which makes a live album what it should be.

Such a shame that Dead went so early. Sadly, it should be expected that such a great vocalist was too good to last forever. Highly recommended if you are in any way, shape, or form, a fan of Mayhem.