Okay, so the release starts with church bells and guttural shouts. The brutal attack that follows, however, proves well worth the cheese. The riffs on “Bondage Goat Zombie” serve as a perpetual blaze and the blast beats exemplify the peak of session drummer Torturer’s abilities. Yet the barrage does not blur like so many Death Metal releases. The textures and notes show a fine blend of melodic, disharmonic, and technical decisions that result in an intricate but enjoyable onslaught.
The songs with sexual titles expose a weak point that few fans will approve. “Sexdictator Lucifer” abandons tradition with limited success, but “The Sukkubus Lustrate” sucks. The tempo slows in these tracks and occasionally a male vampire surfaces in search of a garlic tablet. Let’s flip the inverted crosses in the band’s logo and prevent his influence on the next release.
The remainder, however, works quite well. “Stigma Diabolicum” and “Justine: Soaked In Blood” possess great riffs and a feel that most followers will consider unique. The percussive contributions fit well in comparison with previous offerings, but someone else will take the reins soon. BELPHEGOR holds no loyalty for drummers as Helmuth’s split parts and riffs add more to the mix than anything else.
For a band with such brutal efforts as “The Last Supper” this release seems tame. The execution and production prove somewhat paramount compared to previous discs, and those seeking refinement from the dark legends will find much to praise from BELPHEGOR in 2008.
(Online April 28, 2008)