Mystic Circle
Erzdämon

It’s a sunny day in the Rio Grande Valley. Spring is in the air (for now anyway), all that could change in a matter of days; but for now, it’s a pleasant day. Birds are chirping and I’m reviewing a Melodic Black Metal album. What a time to be alive!

I think it’s in the style of Black Metal that Mystic Circle plays. This isn’t your usual sullen and grim, recorded by some dudes in a basement Black Metal. It’s kinda peppy, like not really happy but not feeling completely down either. True story, I don’t get it, I keep thinking of Old Man’s Child and while I love me some Old Man’s Child, I guess maybe I just wasn’t expecting it so early in the day… maybe. Fuck it, anyway. Here I am, a guy with a keyboard and I’m here to talk about a revelation of sorts; how I still don’t really dig Erzdämon but I don’t completely hate it, either.

I’m having this problem where I just want to review Old Man’s Child and slap Mystic Circle’s name on it. It’s the title track’s fault, if blame is to be placed; starting out with a neat little keyboard intro and then the blasting starts, the keyboards are doing this funky jive around everything else and while it’s catchy as hell, I’m not going to lie here: Erzdämon is a beguiling album, it’s infectious and Mystic Circle are good at it. I mean, they’ve been around since 1992, but then broke up for whatever reason. Yeah, I honestly thought they had stayed broken up, but apparently have been pumping out albums since 1995 when they reformed, go figure.

“From Hell” is a punchy tune but I just can’t get that comparison out of my fucking head, Born of the Flickering, The Pagan Prosperity; you get the hint. “The Unholy Trinity” is a fair track, but I think it’s “Scarecrow” that is my favorite song here. It’s the songs that sound like Mystic Circle and no one else that I like, they can be beautifully melodic when they want to be “Asmodeus and the Temple of God” is a good example of that. “Welcome to the Midnight Mass” has this slick as fuck break at the 1.15 mark that opens the song up into something sweeping and grand, “The Mothman” is a fun track and so is “Skinwalker.”

At the end of it all, it’s like I said; I don’t hate it. Yes, there are elements of it that mirror a certain Norwegian band; but it can also stand on its own merit. I can say easily that if you like Old Man’s Child, Dimmu Borgir, Cradle of Filth, and Night in Gales (yeah, they’re Blackened/Death Metal but it fits); you’ll be happy with Erzdämon. Check it out and give it a go.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Jeremy Beck
April 12th, 2023

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