Right from the beginning one can tell that ZWARTKETTERIJ (one of the hardest bands names I’ve yet to spell) aren’t all that serious. With an opening chant of ‘Hail Satan!’ on their latest release, “Cult Of The Necro-Thrasher”, ZWARTKETTERIJ set a tone for a cheesy yet very Metal album that will have metalheads headbanging and laughing too.
Whether or not you enjoy the cheese factor of Heavy Metal at times still doesn’t mean you won’t like “Cult Of The Necro-Thrasher”. Although the lyrics may be so ‘kvlt’ to the point of ridiculousness, the music that surrounds the lyrics is down right spectacular. ZWARTKETTERIJ blend Black Metal and Thrash Metal almost perfectly with their follow-up to their debut “Sodomizer Dirty Sodomizer”. The guitar chemistry between members Jack Hellfire and Nick Satan (doesn’t this band just keep getting better and better?!) is explosive as the members trade between riffs, leads, and solos without ever showing signs of slowing or hesitation. They flow between SLAYER-esque riffs to MAYHEM inspired atmosphere with very little lag. It’s even impressive how the drummer can keep a double bass going with the Thrash cymbal work on top of it and never lose step.
One part of ZWARTKETTERIJ that may throw some listeners off is the use of two vocal parts in most songs. There is some Thrash inspired Black Metal vocals that dominate most of the album and then there an almost folksy sounding vocal part that helps with choruses and other parts in the song selection. At first the sung parts threw me off but after a few of them I grew to really enjoy them. They add a new dynamic to the music that wouldn’t be there otherwise.
Of course any band with lyrical content that includes sex, alcohol, Metal, and Satan is going to be very cliché. What works for ZWARTKETTERIJ is that they use these themes to the extreme in their lyrical writing. Instead of trying to be serious and turning cheesy – the band tries to be cheesy and turns out to be very good at it. You almost take their goofiness very seriously and it works. It’s hard not to like the song “Lick My Chainsaw, Bitch!” despite how ridiculous the concept of the song is.
This album may offend some listeners. But as I was once told, “It’s not funny unless it offends someone.” This holds very true for Black Thrashers ZWARTKETTERIJ on “Cult Of The Necro-Thrasher”. The music is surprisingly complex and entertaining and the lyrics will have you chanting in no time. This is one of the biggest surprises of 2007.
Songs to check out: “Cult Of The Necro-Thrasher”, “Macedonian Horror Cries”, “Lick My Chainsaw, Bitch!”.
(Online December 21, 2007)