When I want to drug my mind with the most evil, brutal and hateful Black Metal, I don’t think it twice and look for GORGOROTH in my CD collection. Years pass, band members change, vocalists come and go but I know that these Norwegians will always keep loyalty to their blackened roots, and the allegiance with the horned one will not be broken.
“Under The Sign Of Hell” is their third Full-Length, and the first one featuring Pest on the vocals. Terrifying, very raw and crushingly heavy like their two previous master albums “Pentagram” and “Antichrist”, UTSOH is demolishing Black Metal, although very melancholic melodic lines are added, creating a pretty haunting atmosphere.
But if there is one thing that makes “Under The Sign Of Hell” a superb piece in GORGOROTH’s discography, that is the riffing. The work of Infernus -the mastermind behind the band- is here extraordinary. Varied, original, viscous yet melodic riffs are delivered by the guitarist, and although this CD is no particularly attractive in terms of songwriting, the strings alone make it a little Black Metal jewel.
Generally speaking, the songs are constructed in a very simple way, with the guitar forming the base over which the whole structure is built. Pest is a hellish vocalist with a very fucked off voice, and the drumming of Grim (who would kill himself two years later) is fulfilling and disturbing.
“Under The Sign Of Hell” is a mandatory album for Blackers, just like every disc by GORGOROTH. An uncompromised, direct and truly Satanist piece that mixes blasting aggression with extremely slow, doomier parts and believe me they are scary. And as bonus, one of the best guitar performances I had ever heard in Black Metal… what more would you ask for?
(Online November 29, 2006)