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Old glory isn't enough for me...sorry - 50%

black_slime, March 21st, 2012

Although this album has 18 reviews or so, I felt obliged to add my own, especially after I saw the 77% rating for this album which is clearly TOO FUCKING MUCH. Now I'm not writing this review just to lower Mayhem's rating, but to express my disappointment in somewhat overrated Mayhem's present quality. Mayhem went well downhill after their not-so-significantly bad release "Grand Declaration Of War". Since then, they've been trying to recover their old glory on the "Chimera" album, and now this...

We all remember great songs from the "Deathcrush" ep or the "De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas" album and where the heck did it all go? Well, you'll get the point after you listen to the riffage on this album. It's pure shit, it has absolutely no "blackness" in it, no inspiration, just something that tries really hard, but fails in every aspect of brutality and that martyr black metal sound. All of that makes the songs extremely dull. I would expect more from these black metal veterans, but clearly they've gone softer over the years as they're getting older that is. All in all, I give 5% to riffage because of its high mediocrity.

The vocals are, considering black metal, extremely good, although I prefer much "dirtier" vocals in black metal, but considering the passing of time and modernization and all, I think they're really, really good. Vocals pretty much depict blackness in its full dirty misanthropic form and they pretty much succeed in this part, so I give them 15%, although I guess they would sound better if the riffage wasn't so mediocre.

As far as lyrics go, they're pretty much standard black metal. Nothing more to say about them, although they vary from song to song from misanthropic to somewhat gloomy and apocalyptic . So lyrics get 10% for being plain okay.

Because of the bad riffage, bass lines follow in "badness". It's okay, but not...good, so the bass lines get 5% along with riffage. The drumming is for the most part pretty good, considering other bad stuff on this album, and keeps up a good solid rhythm. Smashing and bashing crashes and chimes, the drumming pretty much pulls this album out of shit. But drums are not "the whole" band, but a link in a chain, and a pretty strong link. So drumming gets 15% for making all of this sound better and for being a well-oiled machine.

If I was to compare this particular album to a chain, I'd say that the vocals and drumming are the only strong links with lyrics holding solidly to the other two very corroded, weak, and shitty ones.

So all in all, this is a plain mediocre album. It's worth listening to if you want to complete the whole "Mayhem goes down on black metal quality" experience. Mayhem is still an excellent and solid black metal band with live performances that go out of this world, and we still have high hopes that maybe, just maybe they'll go back to being "pure fucking Armageddon" once more rather than this.