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Fate's weakest - 85%

Dethrone_Tyranny, October 12th, 2003

Well, this record is in the same vein as 'Dead Again' was, though going in a more experimental direction. An no, this is not good experimentation like what was done on 'Time', this is mixing modern, computerized sounds with metal. Not good. Fortunatly though, this is only in a few tracks. The opener, 'Last Rites' is all out metal, certainly a vicious song and one of the album's best. 'Church of St. Anne' is like 70s Sabbath with more melodic vocals, a very cool song indeed. I think that Fate should do more like that, very doomy (in a good way, not that shitty death metal doom) yet with the guitar licks and vocal harmonies keeping it in the traditional metal vein. Ok, here we have the first experimental track, 'Sold My Soul'. This is actually a pretty cool song, though with modern metalcore elements. I guess it's mainly due to the exceptionaly well done chorus. 'House On The Hill' sounds like it was taken off the 'Dead Again' album, it's raw in that sort of way and only slightly catchy, so it's nothing more than a decent metal song. 'Burn In Hell'!!!....what a song! One of the band's best, extreamly catchy and very memorable, if only the rest of the album could have been like this. ::grrrr:: Ahh, and now for a bad song...'The Grave'. Probably the most experimental track on the album, it just sucks. King's voice is actually good on this song, but the music sucks. It's boring and dull, with a metalcore-ish guitar distortion to it, very weak. Well, I think this is the first time the band has ever done this....used a drum machine. Yep, that's what is used on the song 'Insane'. This is not a memorable track by any means, it's the shortest on the album and is nothing but thrash riffing and double blast beats done by a drum machine, so it's not anything special. I suggest they don't do that anymore. 'Kiss The Demon' is another one of the more experimental songs here aside from 'The Grave', except I actually LOVE this song. I mean, it's got an amazing rythm to it and the chorus just grabs you by the throat. It sounds nothing like old Fate (except for King's voice) but this is one of my all time favorite MF songs. Ok, now for the main highlight, 'Buried Alive'! WHOA, this song just kicks ASS! This is in the traditional Mercyful Fate style, nothing experimental about this song. It just plain out rocks, unlike the last song after it which plain out sucks. Yup, it sucks. There is nothing good about this song, it's an awful way to end an album considering that it's just boring, forgetable riffs that go nowhere. Some fans suggested that they should have made it into an epic and took us on a trip through the 9 gates of Hell, but thank God..errr Satan...that they didn't, 4 minutes is long enough with a song like this.

Damn, I hope Mercyful Fate gets better on the next release. They should leave the sound effects, over done distortion and drum machines out and continue doing traditional metal. Still, this is an album worth checking out anyway.

Best songs: Church Of St. Anne, Burn In Hell, Kiss The Demon, Buried Alive