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Good but could have been better. - 80%

cyclonous666, March 15th, 2008

Mayhem has returned to bring us another piece of black metal art, this time with Attila handling vocal duties. Attila had not been with Mayhem for almost 13 years so his return was much welcomed. On this album, his vocals combine the deep growls of Dead with Maniac's high pitched shrieks along with his signature all too familiar sound. The final product is a blend of screams, cries, guttural growls and demonic spoken words. Fans of Attila will be very pleased to hear this album but if you were expecting something similar to De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas, you may be disappointed.

The music to Order Ad Chao is definitely very different from anything they have ever created. The riffs can be compared to some of the work heard on Wolf's Lair Abyss. Blasphemer's songwriting style has changed a lot since Chimera. Fast tremolo picking with the typical eerie black metal chords make up the sound of most of the riffs but the atmosphere of this album is purely evil and cold more so than any of their previous releases. This album does not contain any of the crunchy break downs that were heard throughout Chimera. The riffs which are very complex and tend to change drastically are usually used only in one sequence and are rarely repeated more than once in the songs. Mayhem changed drastically since Chimera because they went from using the verse/chorus structure a lot to not at all in Ordo Ad Chao.

The unpredictable nature of this album makes listeners constantly wondering what is next to come. Fans of traditional black metal may find listening to Ordo Ad Chao unpleasant but to others it just proves how talented the musicians are. Rehearsing to record this album must have been a pain in the ass! The quality of the recording is weak even in comparison to earlier Mayhem recordings. I was disappointed by this because it ruins powerful sound of Hellhammer's drumming. The distortion is very high and drowns out a lot of the toms and the double bass. Even though the recording quality is not as good as it could have been, the album is sure to go down in history as one of the most innovative and unique black metal albums of all time.