Stand the old adage on its head; if it sounds good it is good. With Azaghal if it sounds bad it is good. Azaghal is one of those bands that never disappoint. There are many bands that are more talented and scores that are less talented but Azaghal keep on churning out enjoyably crude raw black metal played to perfection. The skill level is not as significant as their dedication to the craft, but precision is on display. The biggest change with this release, their seventh official full length, is the record label. Moribund will give them worldwide distribution for the first time. It seems the band challenged themselves to make the best possible retro-Azaghal album in honor of the honor of worldwide distribution.

Within the first five seconds you know not only what you are in for, but also what the band has always stood for. Past albums have featured blazing fast tempos, intricate guitar solos, slowish moody pieces and clean vocals on top of pure aggression. This time they stripped back down to their primal roots and focused on the venom spewing viciousness mandatory for any band of this style. Don’t worry, their carefully crafted guitar lines are still there and they still offer nice flourishes buried just below the surface awaiting the careful listening that will uncover them. This album is worth a third and fourth listen before you pass judgment. Favorite songs, “Kaikkinakevan Silman Alla” “Vihani Raivoavina Valtamerina” and, if for no other reason than I don’t think any other band has ever written about the feathered snake before, “Quetzalcoatl”.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Grimulfr
May 1st, 2008


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