Horned Almighty - World of Tombs - (9/10)
Published on August 23, 2014
Continuing to lay swaths of utter destruction, Danish ass kickers Horned Almighty return to the front with with fifth full length album, World of Tombs, which was released in the early fall of 2014. Only seeing one lineup change since their lauded 2010 album, Necro Spirituals. Really the lineup change isn’t very drastic, as they continue with a new bassist and only one guitarist. The heart of Horned Almighty, the founding duo of guitarist Hellpig and vocalist S. along with longtime drummer Harm, have been featured on every release to date.
The band’s early albums Black Metal Jesus and The Devil’s Music: Songs of Death and Damnation are thrashing black and roll albums that are as sinister as they are rollicking. Over the subsequent years Horned Almighty has honed their blackened craft into a caustic, no holds barred amalgamation of black metal, primitive first wave bashing and thrashing black ‘n’ roll. If you missed out on 2010’s Necro Spirituals or 2009’s Contaminating the Divine, don’t fear, as World of Tombs continues right where they left off, with ten tracks and nearly forty minutes of pummeling, acerbic blackened metal.
While individual tracks summon different influences and we could sit and dissect all of the influences at play for hours on end, all that really matters is that World of Tombs is a heavy as hell album that continues Horned Almighty’s trend of caustic blackened metal. From the mid-paced blasting of “Unpure Salvations”, with its leaning towards blackened death metal, to the rollicking, Venom and early Bathory vibes on “This Unholy Dwelling” and “Plague Propaganda”, World of Tombs is a frenetic and multifaceted beast. Hell, they even close the album with a trudging cover of Autopsy’s “Twisted Mass of Burnt Decay” on the digipak version.
Certainly the strong production lends to the utterly devastating sound here, as everything is loud and acerbic. The bass is clearly a driving force, something that many production jobs leave you straining to hear, and it’s a nice supplement to the thrashy punk based riffing and sporadic trem-riffs (like the middle of “Blessed by Foulness”). The pissed off, raspy shouts combine with the in your face riffing and swell into one writhing mass of blackened metal. Fans of Carpathian Forest, Impaled Nazarene and early Bathory would do well to check this album out. Horned Almighty is certainly a force to be reckoned with and World of Tombs proves that they are among black metal’s elite.