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hella underrated - 89%

RapeTheDead, December 26th, 2016

I never really heard much about this album one way or another before I bought it myself. The general opinion is that it's a satisfactory Vader release, but also isn't quite as good as Litany. That being said, what is? It's easy to overlook this, especially because The Beast is often thought to be one of their weakest. Revelations seems doomed to linger in this weird transition ground between Vader's best and worst albums, but that really shouldn't be the case. This is a continuation of Vader's golden age, with all of the elements that make a great Vader album present. Revelations has some of the most complete songs, the best drumming and the most balanced production job Vader's ever had, and if you missed it before you're really doing yourself a disservice in not checking it out!

I didn't say this was the best production Vader's ever had, mind you. It's pretty hard to top the ear-raping kick drum on Litany, but Revelations takes its own approach to a heavier sound by giving the bass a little more wiggle room in the mix. Bass lines have never been more than a supplementary element to Vader's music, but their enhanced presence on this album makes for a fat, rich tone. This is also the album where Piotr really refines his trademark growl-yell; he finally found his sound on Litany, sure, but on the whole he sounds much more comfortable and less strained in his delivery on Revelations. He plays around with some unusual vocal lines, most notably on "When Darkness Calls" when he says "unconceivable evil" and varies the rhythm around a little bit when he repeats it. That's personally one of the more memorable vocal moments for me, and that track is one of their strongest on the album. May even be my favorite vocal performance from Piotr. Overall it's not quite as clean of a production as you might find on later records, nor as thick and pummeling as the sound they got on Litany, but Revelations has its own distinct vibe that works in its own way.

This sadly ended up being the last full-length Doc recorded with the band. But holy shit, lemme tell ya, on Revelations, the Doctor is IN. This is my personal favorite performance from him. He partially benefits from the slightly more diverse songs. I mean, we're still talking Vader here, so there's not gonna be TOO much deviation, but previous albums tended to have tracks that were more unitary and focused in their ideas. Revelations has a lot of different tracks that are content to have an equal amount of slow-to-midpaced groove in addition to faster, blasty moments. The songs are a bit longer on the whole to accommodate this. It doesn't matter what's going on, though, because the blast master himself knows exactly what beat fits regardless of speed. His blasting is precise down to the millisecond and he has a way of accenting straightforward drum patterns that is distinct while still not attempting to show off or overtake the riffs. On this album, he's noticeable during the slow parts too! Somehow, he keeps what should be single-minded, monotonous music consistently fresh and engaging, and his skills are all showcased to the max on Revelations. Doc is one of my favorite all-time extreme metal drummers, and this album is a huge reason for that. He makes the whole band around him better.

There's a couple of songs on Revelations that are oddities in Vader's discography, most notably "Revelation of Black Moses". It's a slower, groovy number, clocking in at just under seven minutes, which is pretty damn long for this band. This isn't something that Vader hasn't attempted before--"Reign-Carrion" functions in a similar manner, and that was on their first album, but even that was a little more brisk and reminiscent of something like Sepultura's "Inner Self". "Revelation of Black Moses" is the first time they really went for the jugular and brought their music to a snail's pace to pulverize you. It's a refreshing change of pace (even the biggest of fanboys like me will surely need a break from the hyperblasting every now and then) and the song has a very nice, natural arc, so I would say they pretty much nailed it. There are a couple other tracks that are more unusual for the way they balance a more relaxed pace with the aggressive Vaderblast. "Epitaph" starts off a bit slow, but really picks up about halfway through, which kind of throws you for a loop, as Vader love to kicks things off with a ripper. It's admittedly a bit of a strange selection for an opening track, and I personally think "When Darkness Calls" could have done the same thing in a better way. Even "The Nomad" is a bit more steady than one might be used to as well, but it ends up working in the album's favor. The middle of the album is where things really get good, and the slow start only makes it seem all that much better.

Revelations isn't totally perfect, but even the weaker moments are woven into the greater fabric of the album seamlessly. This is one of Vader's most multi-dimensional albums (mostly thanks to clever songwriting and a phenomenal drum performance) and also feels like the most complete and well-rounded thing they've put out. Why haven't you fallen in love with this yet?

Makes Up For The Dip - 74%

OzzyApu, November 9th, 2013

Revelations isn’t inventive nor does it set any high standards. It came out during a period when Vader went into a brief recession (or a lull period). Maybe after every fantastic release the band sort of goes in a period when they release less-than-stellar quality stuff. After Litany Vader had to put up some numbers that weren’t too bad in comparison. There’d need to be more time for another major success. On its own Revelations is a decent album that captures the right stuff but lacks any inimitable identity – the kind that explains why the best Vader albums are as good as they are.

“Epitaph” indicates the kind of Vader I love most – catchy riffs, groovy rhythms, and the need to not have to be breakneck-fast with obligatory blast beats. Peter’s vocals are spot on with that hoarse growl loudly proclaiming dominance over the album. His voice’s dry harshness is inseparable from the ferocious playing. The production’s like any modern death metal album: a well-balanced sound, muddy-sharp guitar tones, somewhat autonomous bass, and a pummeling drum kit with not one tinny thing about it. There’s no loss to the powerful blare the guitars leave after every pick, with plenty of riffs to go around. It’s a huge sound that does justice to the album’s rough conduct. That conduct is the delivery and attitude of the album from the more refined tracks to the less developed ones.

Both types of tracks have their place. On one hand it makes for an album with no wrongs, but recall that Vader’s style is very straightforward. It takes putting a twist on this type of music to make it even better than what the compositions themselves can accomplish. The Slayer-esque influence only takes Peter so far, so it’s up to him to create something credible and fascinating. This album lacks that fascinating component (except for one track), so it gets knocked down in that regard. The bonus track “Son Of Fire” reminds me too much of “Decapitated Saints” if it was less interesting, “Lukewarm Race” is almost as lukewarm as its name due to its lack of variance, and “Torch Of War” feels like Vader treading the same ground. If the band churned out something like “The Code” with those catchy riffs and switching up the rhythm instead of going for blasting assaults then this album wouldn’t be held back as much.

Above all else the one song that totally saves this album from ending on a poor note is the final song, “Revelation Of Black Moses”. As far as I know, this is Vader’s longest song and it’s just different enough from the rest of the album for me to appreciate it on an extra level. For an album that lacks epic tendencies this finale sure makes up for it. It features the same class of riffs as the rest of the album but brings it to a mid-paced platform. It opts for a trudging pace throughout while spilling out a few times into a death metal with elegance. The cross between the vitriolic death metal side and the poignant leads don’t make this one completely distinguished. Like I said, it makes it diverse enough to be a competent finisher that hooks me in a way the rest of the album doesn’t.

There’s not much else going for this one. It’s good from the start but dips a little near the end when it opts for shorter songs. That’s nothing new for Vader, but putting a spin on it is required to be interesting. On a whole and when compared to The Beast this isn’t a bad album. It just shows good ideas mixed with a few half-full ones that prevent it from being a great album. Had Vader gave this a different coating and gone for the epic angle like on “Revelation Of Black Moses,” we could be listening to a far more exciting album (or at least one that attempts a different approach).

Vader's "South of Heaven" - 81%

The_Emo_Hater, August 24th, 2011

As the review title would suggest, "Revelations" was a hell of a different beast compared to the preceding album. "Litany" was a literal facefuck of brutality, short speedy numbers, and a production that would give Scott Burns a boner. Thus my first listen of Revelations back in 2002 was met with some disappointment. Back then I was a Vader newbie, all I knew was "Litany" and I was sad to see the bass heavy production and the speed largely absent, replaced by midpaced riffing and more complicated song structuring. Truth be told, anything following "Litany" would probably be a slight step back as that was, and still is one of the most violent offerings in death metal. But that would be another review.

"Revelations" is unmistakably Vader, with Peter's distinctive accented roaring, Doc's still in good form on the skins(sadly, this would be his final recording), Mauser does a fine job with the riffage and some of the solos, and Simon makes his only Vader appearance holding down the low end. The production is nowhere as bass heavy as Litany was, but it is thick and meaty and gives the songs a sonic punch in the balls. The songs are somewhat of a mixed bag, as mentioned before, there is quite a bit of slower, midpaced material on here. However there is some of the fast paced Polish godness you've all come to expect out of these guys.

"Epitaph" opens up the album with some slow guitar lines before a Slayer-ish riff takes over and the song then marches through a couple verses, complete with Doc's pounding double bass, before speeding up halfway through and treating the listener with a set of solos and Peter's Polish accentuated warcry of "KEEL THEM ALL!!!" Good stuff. The opening riff to "Nomad" is strikingly similar to "Xeper" and the song itself is similar to the opening track, sans the speedier second half; "Nomad" is pretty slow in its entirety.

"Whisper" has some guest screams courtesy of Nergal and some eerie spoken words from Peter and is one of the faster tunes on display here. "When Darkness Calls" is the most varied song here, with a good build up to the fast verses and slows down considerably after the first solo to a crushing breakdown like section before blasting off again towards the end. "Torch of War" and Lukewarm Race" both cook pretty goddamn hard throughout and could easily found space on "Litany". The closing "Revelation of Black Moses" is easily one of the best songs Vader has ever written. It is doomy, crushing and has some of the best riffs on the album. And that first solo could incite ejaculation from the castrated, it is that good.

"Revelations" was a sidestep in Vader's illustrious career but looking back, it is better than rewriting "Litany" and robbing that album of it's punch. If you haven't heard Vader yet, this is as good an album to start at as any other.

It's all about the last track - 72%

NocturneFreeze, August 11th, 2008

Vader has this nasty habit of making many songs look a lot like each other. Usually it's not a problem. As long as the quality is top-notch, diversity is just a backup plan. But what if the quality isn't like classics as Litany or De Profundis. Yeah, then problems start to exist.

The first two songs aren't of any problems. Epitaph and The Nomad are fine tracks, nothing new but great to headbang to. After that, the songs become pretty average. Wolftribe and Whispers are the usual Vader tracks, except there are no good riffs in it to qualify them as good tracks. After that, the quality rarely picks up. Except for Torch of War and The Code the songs aren't anything special.

Up until the last track. As if Vader wanted to bore the listener so much to eventually send the listener's mind to a heavenly hell. Revelations of Black Moses is not only the most original thing Vader has ever put out, it's also the best. 7 Minutes of slow-paced but heavy as hell riffing. The lyrics are incredible on this track. Though the subject remains the same as other Vader lyrics, Piotr takes a very poetic course. Like the title suggests, it's the evil version of the story of Moses.

Not only is the riffing the best of all, the solo's and leads are tremendous as well. The solo at the 3 minute mark might just be one of the best solo's in death metal. Starting slowly and acceralating to end up real fucking fast. Revelations of Black Moses is the most evil, most awesome song Vader has ever made.

Although the only track to remember is the last one, the whole album is like the usual Vader album ridden of atrocious songs. The problem is just that they don't put anything new or of great quality in the basket. If more attention was laid on tracks such as Lukewarm Race or Whispers, this album might as well be rated among album as De Profundis, Black to the Blind or Impressions in Blood.

Black moses is my name, and these are visions from Egypt's guardian seraph

Decent, straightforward death metal - 78%

Zaphod, March 2nd, 2007

"Revelations" was my first Vader LP, and I've never gotten bored by it. Although nothing totally mind-blowing, it has its ass-kicking moments, is headbangable, and certainly doesn't disappoint at any time. Simply straightforward stuff by one of the quality death metal bands of Europe.

The highlights of the album are definitely the vocals and the solos. Peter's singing style, though not revolutionary, is unique and instantly recognizable, among my favourites in the genre, and keep the album interesting when the riffs let go of my attention. Some say it's an acquired taste, but I've never had troubles acquiring it. The solos then are more captivating, and stay interesting after a couple of dozen listens. Better than your average death metal solos - not here to shred but to create sort of an alienating atmosphere on top of the riffs (see last track).

Overall, the musicianship here is above average. The riffs are decent and not intended to provide some instant satisfaction like so many generic death metal of recent years. Like said by others before, they've got their fair share of thrash influences, and are of the rhythmic, chromatic type rather than the melodic (duh, this is Vader). Clever constructs, but nothing pretentious or bombastic. In the same vein of that are the drums: standard quality modern death metal.

The first song opens with a couple of crushing, mid-paced riffs, then speeds up and displays what most of the album (tracks 2 to 7) will sound like: fast, riff-based, etc. Favourite track on here must be the last one, simply because of its atmosphere; it's a lot slower and more epic.

The production is rather clear and puts the guitars and vocals up front, hiding the bass drum a bit more than on "Litany", and is hence more friendly towards the headache-prone listeners (I guess). Overall decent as well, if modern.

33 minutes of steadfast death metal. Not stellar, but get this if you're into the genre.

Litany, but more technical and heavy - 85%

AzzMan, July 24th, 2004

From the beginning of Epitaph to the end of Revelations, this is Litany and more. Where some of the tracks on Litany were too short, too fast, or just plain boring, Revelations redoes it, sets aside fast riffs and pulls out fairly more technical, slower ones that end a whole lot heavier. The soloing, likewise, isn't just a speedy little on-the-fly thing, they're generally not all that long, but alot deeper and nicer to hear.

The drumming gets revamped, the double bass seems to be produced the same, except for the fact that in some tracks, it gets used quite a bit more, in a Bolt Thrower style. Blasting is seen a bit less, and everything is bettered again.

Vocally, there's no real change, no best parts, the vocals aren't the stand out part, either. You're not listening for that. Listen to the overly catchy riffage, the more brutal drumming, or the different song structures, or the fact that the songs are over two damned minutes.

That's one thign the album shines about. My attention is at a full when listening to music- I want to absorb what's going on, pick out parts I like, and dissect every song. It's hard to do when it's just a speedy, repeated chorus riff, and repetitive blasting. Actually, it's easier but not nearly as impressive. The songs are a good bit longer, as stated more technical in almost every way, and overall a hell of a lot better than on Litany. For sheer enjoyment, Litany DOES probably top Revelations, but this is a bit more casual. It doesn't loose its feel, where Litany (For me at least) got old, then a bit later I could go back and listen to it, before it became redundant yet insanly fun.

This album's a real keeper, especially for those who didn't really find much enjoyment in Litany's odd time styling.

Kill them all! - 77%

stickyshooZ, July 1st, 2004

One day I was at the record store, looking for Vader’s “Litany” and came across only one album in the Vader section: “Revelations.” I was a bit indifferent and decided that I’d go home, check out metal-archives reviews on the album and decide whether or not I’d purchase it after reading all the reviews. Hmm, pretty decent reviews with good ratings, sounds like a very solid purchase! I listened...and while I remain slightly disappointed at the fact that this is a step down from the godly “Litany,” I’m not going to do a review for comparison purposes. This review is for the music on THIS album, not a debate on whether or not album X is better than, worse than, or as good as album Y.

No, I don’t think this isn’t as good as Litany, but it’s not bad by any means. The death metal tank from Poland is still going strong with bludgeoning and militant music. Like most metal fans know, death metal evolved from thrash, and you can easily hear the thrash era Slayer influences in Vader’s music. These influences show clearly in tracks like “Epitaph,” “Torch of War,” and “The Code” with speedy guitar, some of which sounds in vein of Metallica as well (listen carefully to “The Code” and you‘ll hear it). If you know anything about death metal, then it’s obvious that all of the songs are going to be pertinently wild and fast (death metal wasn’t born from thrash to be known for gentleness, evidently).

The guitars are very indistinct in sound - thrashy with plenty of heavy slab, which feels like dropping anvils on your head. This album along with “Litany” have opened my eyes to the wholesomeness of Doc’s drumming, who puts on nothing short of a bountiful performance. There isn’t just a bunch of blast beating; there is variety too - something which a lot of death metal bands seem to forget about, especially in the drum department. Like in most death metal, there is a lot of tremolo picking as well (“When Darkness Calls” is a good example of some fine tremolo melody). Great news though - its not just tremolo picking in the guitar department, there is a fair amount of chugging riffage going on, especially in songs like “Epitaph.”

There are some very catchy tracks, like “The Nomad” with the hypnotic chugging guitar riffs and obtuse drumming. For awhile, I’ve been kind of irked by Peter’s vocals, but hey, they are different and more unique than most death metal vocalists in the business are. If there were anything perplexing about this album, I’d say it’s the solos. The solos wail and scream into the flow of music, batter the listener, then fade out with that haunting vanish of lament...and how can you not love that wrathful line in “Epitaph” near the end... “KILL THEM ALL!” Pure fucking rage and aggression right there.

Over all, this isn’t a bad album, but I feel it’s a step down from “Litany,” musically. It’s certainly aggressive and assertive like Vader have always been. Very good album, not great, but pretty worthy attempt.

Pure Classic Death Metal - 90%

Dead_Meat_Industry, January 6th, 2003

Vader is back again with another album of Polish metal mayhem! "Revelations" is an album that should certainly not be overlooked amongst the large amounts of identical sounding foreign death metal cds out there right now. This is original material.

The first track "Epitaph" is a typical mid-paced song with decent drumming and the phrase shouted out near the end of the song: "Kill them all!" The second track "The Nomad" starts out with catchy guitar, and progresses into a classic Vader song. The song "Whisper", which in my opinion is the best on the album, features guest vocalist Nergal from the black/death metal and Behemoth. This song is what I like to call a full-scale metal assault! It reaches extreme levels of aggression and power heard by few metal bands today.

The next few tracks all convey a sort of thrash type sound, which Vader does well. "Torch of War" is another aggressive high speed song with insane drumming from none other than Doc himself! The final track "Revelation of Black Moses" is what I thought was the weak point of the album. It slows down a lot, and while it has well written lyrics, the music just dosen't do it for me. The U.S. version of the album has 3 bonus tracks, which are also good and show more of Vader's talent.