Watain - Lawless Darkness review
|Release date:||June 2010|
01. Death's Cold Dark
03. Reaping Death
04. Four Thrones
05. Wolves Curse
06. Lawless Darkness
07. Total Funeral
08. Hymn To Qayin
09. Kiss Of Death
10. Waters Of Ain
11. Chains Of Death [Death SS cover] [Digipak bonus]
So with much anticipation, stoked by a three year wait and the crazed proclamations of E. Andersson, Watain have released Lawless Darkness, the follow-up to the crushing Sworn To The Dark.
I'm not sure if this is going to live up to the hype provided by their outspoken front man, who is to pre-album proclamations what Morbid Angel's Trey Azagthoth is to batshit crazy liner notes… the album has been out a couple weeks and no fires raining from the sky Satamic apocalypse have befallen us.
I consider that a plus.
But I do think the album lives up to the expectations of those reasonable folks who understand you won't spark Armageddon and the extinction of all life on Earth by cutting an album.
Lawless Darkness is a ripping affair.
Erik Danielsson froths furiously into the microphone - you can hear the scorn in his voice. It's top notch. It horrifically captures anger and derision, delivering a litany of horror, death, fire, and black at the listener. Particularly "death" and "black" … the two words are so often used I wished I had patented them. I could retire on the royalties.
The guitar work is the second critical element which really make the album something special. There is great diversity in the riffing… mach 666 speed E-string abuse are combined with crunchy thrash-style riffs, tremolo runs, melodic leads, and even a nice facemelting solo create a powerful atmosphere that runs the entire length of the record. Songs contain enough of each element (aside from the solos. There is but one I recall offhand… a solo solo, if you will) that they shift between modes effortlessly, going from breakneck pace to thrashy choruses. Songs walk the razor's edge of being simultaneously twisted, dark, and flamingdarkdeathevil* while being a little catchy.
Furthermore, the tone of the guitar is awesome. It contains enough distortion that the riffs sound just vile… but at the same time, when they allow (wrong-sounding, and I mean in a sickly sounding way, not a compositionally incorrect way) chords to ring out, ring out they do.
Sure, there are some pounding, forceful rape of the drum kit, and I may have even heard the bass a time or two, but it's the combination of the vocals, guitar, and strength of composition that form the corrupt heart and soul of this release.
So while popping this disk into your cd tray won't bring about the "Coming of the Great White Handkerchief" (<insert the form of Ragnarok that coincides with your system of beliefs here>), it's a diabolically splendid album and is highly recommended for those of you who take your metal like I take my coffee… Black. With two lumps of goats blood.
* was struggling for an adequate adjective to use without reusing the same ones I had used earlier in the review.. couldn't think of one offhand, said "fuck it" and thought WWWD? (What would Watain Do?)… in 11 song titles, "Death" is found 4 times, "Dark" twice… I threw the Watain Thesaurus in a blender and that's what came out.
||Written on 22.06.2010 by BitterCOld has been officially reviewing albums for MetalStorm since 2009.|
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