Samael - Lux Mundi review
|Release date:||April 2011|
02. Let My People Be!
03. Of War
05. For A Thousand Years
06. The Shadow Of The Sword
07. In The Deep
08. Mother Night
09. Pagan Trance
10. In Gold We Trust
11. Soul Invictus
12. The Truth Is Marching On
It takes an enormous amount of talent to be able to churn out album after album containing a similar number of songs of similar length, arrangements and structure and to keep the listener interested, especially since the last album of this somewhat unified dynasty is the best one in the last fifteen years. Passage, Eternal, Reign of Light, Solar Soul, and now Lux Mundi - if you look closely, you will notice that 100% of all the songs from these five albums basically have the same length - from 3:12 to 4:55. No shorts, no longs, basically no variety - no guitar solos, no long instrumental passages, no intros, no outros. Metal music stripped down to its essence - verse, chorus, bridge, rinse, repeat.
I have no clue how Samael do it, but their ostensible lack of musical progress never fails to satisfy me. One by one, their albums land in my cd player and spend quite a long time there before something else draws my attention. It's no different with Lux Mundi. Moreover, this last album is easily their best since Passage, which was the first (and arguably still the best) attempt at connecting the old sound with new, adventurous directions. The most recent album sees the formula introduced on Passage refined, pushed slightly forward and perfected.
Black metal is still deeply rooted in Samael's sound, but modern industrial rears its ugly head and accentuates its presence all the time. The connection of the two styles is seamless (like it was before), but this time it sounds exceptionally well. Take the best song on the album, "The Shadow Of The Sword." Powerful, groovy riffs, distinct singing that verges on being infectiously melodic, especially in the chorus, and, as usual, brave and thought-provoking lyrics. This single song shows all the strengths of Samael's music. Actually, it's so friggin good, that it's easily my most listened to song in the last two months. And believe me, there are at least four more songs of similar, stellar quality, and the rest don't lag far behind.
Middle age in the 21st century
Struggling to survive modernity
Trapped in a time of obscurantism
Where minds rely on archaism.
The best active metal band from Switzerland, as opposed to institutionalised religion which they always criticise, has no problem with fitting into the demands of the 21st century. Their thinking about music is modern and archaism-free. With bands like Samael around, the future looks bright.
||Written on 11.07.2011 by Writes overly honest and totally subjective reviews when fancy strikes him. Which is not often. Which is probably good, all things considered.|
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