Blood Magick Necromance

Written by: EW on 19/04/2011 11:25:29

Travel back to 2003 and with the release of "Lucifer Incestus", the depraved Austrian horde of Belphegor, uptil that point a promising black/death band yet to hit the spot, released one of the most blasphemous, brutal and well-written albums I've still yet hear from any band proclaiming to be 'extreme metal'. I can explain it no better than by saying if you should choose to name your songs "Demonic Staccato Erection" or "Fukk the Blood of Christ", or feature on your cover an orgy of well-endowed nuns centred upon the Dark Lord himself, you'd better have the riffs to get away with it.

Eight years, and now five whole albums later, is it conceivable to think Belphegor can still rise to such a precedence? What has come between then and now, "Blood Magick Necromance", has been patchy at best and this trend continues as the band strive continually to outdo themselves, not realising what has come before is virtually untouchable as far as this kind of bestial, violently unhinged black/death metal can go. The lightning speed of the majority of the band's creations however remains (and is unlikely to ever disappear) from the moment "In Blood - Devour This Sanctity" opens up; "Angeli Mortis De Profundis" openly exceeds this half-way through with such inherent spite that you wonder how Helmuth and his cohorts this week can continue to espouse such a visceral hatred of religion without ever treading the same boards twice.

What guaranteed/s Belphegor a place above average is their ability to pen a truly epic riff, and what was done with "Fukk the Blood of Christ" is done here with "Rise to Fall and Fall to Rise" and "Impaled Upon the Tongue of Sathan". These combinations of slow and fast, no doubt in mind of allowing their drummer a chance to catch breath, adequately serve to break the monotony of the all-out blastathons plenty of others (e.g. Dark Funeral) remain happy to engage in. It comes in the less inspiring moments nowadays that Belpegor begin to lose ground - probably evident from the atrocious cover - where they now sound like a parody of their former selves. Over-saturation of their own style in recent years has reduced the effects of each subsequent release soon after it's predecessor, even when an album like this contains more noteworthy than ones to be skipped. It all adds to a feeling of there sometimes being too much of a good thing.

It's harder than ever for bands at the truly extreme of metal to find a sound that is their own, and then to release an album almost without defect is virtually unheard of. Belphegor probably count as one of those bands, and while they hammer along like this will always be worthy of attention - just accept that perhaps their creative peak was some time in the past.

Download: Angeli Mortis De Profundis. Sado Messiah, Rise to Fall and Fall to Rise
For The Fans Of: Marduk, Dark Funeral, Behemoth
Listen: Myspace

Release date: 14.01.2011
Nuclear Blast Records

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