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1349 - Massive Cauldron Of Chaos review


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Band: 1349
Album: Massive Cauldron Of Chaos
Release date: September 2014

01. Cauldron
02. Slaves
03. Exorcism
04. Postmortem
05. Mengele's
06. Golem
07. Chained
08. Untitled [Limited edition bonus]
09. Godslayer
10. Tornado [Voivod cover] [Limited edition bonus]
11. The Heretic [Possessed cover] [digipak bonus]

Four years have passed and 1349 greet us with a new album, entitled Massive Cauldron Of Chaos. Although being a black metaller through and through, 1349 was never my cup of tea. When yearning for some True Norwegian, yet "not-so-special" but more straightforward black metal, I mostly put Ragnarok into my player, which I think to be quite similar to the band discussed today. However, from now on I will have to keep an eye on them, for the new album isn't bad at all.

Massive Cauldron Of Chaos contains eight regular songs with a total playing time of 37 minutes. The second track "Slaves" was also released as a single, plus a video was made to support its distribution. A good choice actually, as it's a nice song evoking visual imaginations. After the first track punches the album's name into the listener's mind, "Slaves" hails with a decent chorus and some catchy riffs. The true highlights nevertheless appear later, as "Postmortem" and "Mengele's" bring in some melodic and atmospheric elements, yet having them stand in the background in order to keep the straightforward approach dominating. The same goes for the last track "Godslayer", which completes the best side of the album. Anyway, there is no real bad track on Massive Cauldron Of Chaos, all of the songs work equally fine, but some are just more equal than others.

However, there is one big drawback that keeps disturbing this image. As much as I respect Frost, especially for his work in early Gorgoroth, so much do I hate his bass drum sound on this album. Why? Because there is no bass in it. It clicks like a metronome, leaving the low frequencies to the bass itself. By the way, the bassist does some great work on all the songs as he has both the job of a bassist and bringing the absent punch of the drums back. After a while this really destroys the mood and I'd rather listen to some punching Taake bass drum for example. On the plus side of the production, the guitars and bass work really fine together in terms of volume ratio, such as when one guitar goes for some melodic riffs, for example. It's not that I'm a fan of good production, in fact I actually stick to the old lo-fi works of the early scene, but if there's something so annoying it's this fucking bass drum, it's not nice any more.

Apart from that, Massive Cauldron Of Chaos is really good. Most probably it won't win the black metal album of the year award, but stays as a brutal and occult variety opposed to some very modern approaches as seen in the recent years. Furthermore, it definitely marks an improvement in 1349's discography, and we shall hope this continues so there will be more positives in their future music for us not-so-humble and critical listeners.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 8
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 6
Production: 6

Written by Windrider | 09.10.2014


Comments: 8   Visited by: 148 users
10.10.2014 - 00:14
Account deleted
Gonna vouch for this, because it's a lot better than expected. Slaves wasn't much to go by, but I think it's another one of those instances where they released the least impressive song on the album, whereas the rest are much better in quality. Good on them, hope they keep it up.
10.10.2014 - 00:14
Rating: 6

Good review, and I do agree that none of the songs are "bad" per se, but they did seem pretty mediocre to me, other than Postmortem, which you seemed to also enjoy. I might just need to listen to this a bit more, but it didn't really seem like it had anything good hiding in the cracks, waiting for me to discover.
10.10.2014 - 05:07

Seems more varied, and probably more accessible than most of their other releases. Pretty good, as others have said, not going to win any awards... but solid.
10.10.2014 - 06:14

Its awesome IMO.
10.10.2014 - 11:42
Rating: 8
Supreme being
Having listened to this album a few times now, I would say that it's pretty damn good. First two tracks didn't really do much for me, but then it really picks up. Fantastic album imo. grows on me for each listen.
05.11.2014 - 18:39
Rating: 7
Lactation Cnslt
Not bad at all. Postmortem fucking rules though
30.06.2015 - 00:21
Rating: 7

It reminds me a little of Metallica's first album. Blackened thrash. Good, but not very good. Sometimes the album seems to drag and bore.
01.06.2020 - 00:53
Rating: 7
Troy Killjoy
Written by Ziom on 30.06.2015 at 00:21
It reminds me a little of Metallica's first album. Blackened thrash.

Metallica. Black metal.
"Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something."

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