CRADLE OF FILTH has heard the fan’s cry for redemption. Even though I still thoroughly enjoyed “Nymphetamine” and “Thornography” had its moments, the essential back lash from the majority of FILTH fans seemed overwhelming. And now after listening to “Godspeed On The Devil’s Thunder” for its fifth or sixth time, I can firmly say that the band has heard the outcry and reacted beautifully to it.
“Godspeed On The Devil’s Thunder” reincorporates many of the elements that made the band famous in their early days. Returning is a heavy Black Metal influence into the music again with guitars and drum work doing a lot more chaotic and speedy material instead of the catchier stuff. This album is not “Midian” though, there is still quite a bit of that modern influence that fans had complained so much about. “The Death Of Love” aches to be the next single for the band with its dueting male/female vocal parts and simplistic song structure that will have some older fans rolling their eyes in disgust once again. But it’s the more intense and harder tracks that make this album a great listen. The intense galloping rhythms of “The 13th Caesar” or the chaotic blasting of “Tragic Kingdom” are the tracks that get down to business incorporating that older style.
One of the best things about “Godspeed On The Devil’s Thunder” isn’t their older Black Metal elements returning, but the overall conception of the album. It’s a concept album as was made very clear in the pre-release hype, which is crafted very well. It has a wonderful build towards an epic conclusion/climax (as can be seen with some of the track lengths) and the symphonic keyboard intros, thread the individualistic songs into a flowing stream of fantastic storytelling. The spoken word parts (as done by Doug Bradley once again - who might as well claim himself to be a band member by now) match well to the Lovecraftian lyrical work of Dani Filth as it continues the story very impactfully. This album as a whole is one of the best works of storytelling by the band and deserves significant recognition for that.
“Godspeed On The Devil’s Thunder” is CRADLE OF FILTH mixing the modern style and the older style in a perfect match. This album is dynamic, epic, and a monster overall. I’ll give my standing ovation to the band that went from making one of their worst albums to one of their best in one arching step. This was what we have all been waiting for and it has finally arrived.
Songs to check out: “Shat Out Of Hell”, “The 13th Caesar”, “Honey And Sulphur”.
(Online November 15, 2008)