Austria’s masters of “cruel blasphemic hyperblast aggression” get the re-release treatment courtesy of Mercenary Musik. Blutsabbath was originally released in 1997 by Last Episode. For those who already own the original version, read no farther- this is an exact copy.

For those new to the band, Belphegor play black/death and can be described as Morbid Angel meets Dark Funeral. They say their music “hits like the tip of a lance in Navarene’s flesh.” That is a pretty significant statement. That one lance thrust has obviously had lasting ramifications to this very day. How does Blutsabbath stand in comparison? It is basically a continuation of the sound of their debut album, The Last Supper, no evolution, but refinement is obvious. Is it possible to sound more polished without giving up that raw undercooked brutal sound?

The guitars are more prominent than on the debut, with some nice memorable leads and the songs have more dynamic structures. The dominant vocal style is black screams with the death growl all but abandoned, absent entirely on some songs, minimal usage on others. The vocals are at their best on songs that combine both styles. Overall the drums are a bit more blackened than on The Last Supper but it’s not straight blastbeats throughout. “Abschworung” sets the standard for the album in terms of guitar leads and their is nice interplay between vocal styles. “Blutsabbath” is a great slow song while “The Requiem Of Hell” is a great fast song. “Path of Sin” ends with an atmospheric passage that also closes out the album. Is Belphegor as significant as that lance? Only time will tell…

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Grimulfr
April 20th, 2001


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