Darkthrone - Eternal Hails...... review
|Release date:||June 2021|
01. His Master's Voice
02. Hate Cloak
03. Wake Of The Awakened
04. Voyage To A North Pole Adrift
05. Lost Arcane City Of Uppakra
Reviewing a new Darkthrone album can be a bit difficult, considering the duo has tried basically any extreme metal style under the
Their transformation from crust punk-drenched metal to more of a blackened heavy metal sound, that started with Circle The Wagons and became more and more obvious with subsequent releases, has been quite a treat for me. Leave proper musical necromancy to these old guys, who raise their old sounds from the grave in a most authentic way. Their latest release sees the duo doubling down on authenticity with a bluntly demo-like production. The muddy, thin yet raw sound pushes potent riffs to the front of the mix, making me feel like I'm listening to a forgotten Celtic Frost demo from the early '80s. It took me a while to appreciate this production, but it elevates the mysterious, occult atmosphere of the songs.
What mainly makes Eternal Hails...... stand out from Darkthrone's latest material is the epic factor having been cranked up to 11. Sure, already on The Underground Resistance and Old Star the band presented their longest songs to date, but Eternal Hails...... solely consists of compositions continuously changing pace and tone for at least 7 minutes. Fenriz and Nocturno Culto seem fully committed to taking their songs to higher planes and vaster landscapes. From the energizing, galloping heavy metal riffs in "His Master's Voice" and "Wake Of The Awakened" through the hard-hitting doomy sections in "Hate Cloak" to awe-inspiring leads reaching the cosmos in "Voyage To A North Pole Adrift", Eternal Hails...... ticks all the boxes of what fascinated people with metal in the '80s.
I must admit that the album, from time to time, feels like it's trying a bit too much: sometimes I do wish the production was better as the drums can disappear behind the thundering riffing, and tracks like "Hate Cloak" can be too long for their own good. While its opening riffs are catchy, the payoff takes too long what with the drawn-out, uneventful middle section. Some slow burners fortunately do achieve greatness, like the closer "Lost Arcane City Of Uppåkra". Darkthrone finishes the album with a curveball truly cementing the '80s sound, with really creepy John Carpenter-like synths that enhance the sorrowful tone of the final riffs. One can only hope that Darkthrone dives deeper into this particular sound, as I see great potential in it. Then again, Darkthrone do whatever the hell they want. Honestly, I wouldn't have it any other way.
"Lifetime of thoughts
Build layers of walls around you
Lesser and lesser
In common with the humans"
||Written on 23.07.2021 by An extremely lazy reviewer but he's so cute you'd forgive him for it.|
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The Ancient One
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