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Sarcophagus - From The Ruin Of Paradise - 87%

Velkaarn, March 8th, 2005

USA's Sarcophagus may be best known to people as the former band of Judas Iscariot's Akhenaten, which is a pity as the band's releases would deserve attention in their own right. This is the latest (last?) album and probably the best.

They start the first track "Upon the Flesh of the Beast" off with a cool intro and from the start you'll notice the sound is more atmospheric than brutal this time. There are seven songs here (the last one being "Black" from the √úbermenschen EP) and as they're all quite lenghty, clocking between 5:24 and 7:27 it makes the album just perfectly sized chunk for digestion at 37:55. Actually I was left wishing for more. Many riffs are little Judas Iscariotesque but it sounds different enough, if not as rough as on earlier albums. They use some synths to spice up the tracks and for intro effects and the like. This fits the music well. Drumming is quite good and varied enough, if not a fireworks of technical ability. Vocals are convincing black metal screams.

It's hard to pick standout tracks from here as I like all of them, but if forced I'd go for "Into the Void of Paradise", "From the Ruin of Paradise" (which does start off very much like something off a JI album) and "Upon the Flesh of the Beast". In brief, this is an intense, atmospheric and very recommendable black metal album.