Chuck Schuldiner Project

Saturday, January 24, 2015

OBSESSÖR - Assassins of the Pentagram

Do you love first wave black metal? Tired of all the black metal bands emulating  Darkthrone and Emperor rather than Venom and King Diamond? Well have I got the band for you! Namely, OBSESSÖR, and in particular their badass new release "Assassins of the Pentagram".

From the first track the bands musical identity is thoroughly established. Track one, entitled "Return of the Usurper" moves from an eerie solo guitar melody reminiscent of Brocas Helm or Ghost, before going into high speed blackened-thrash riffage. The riffs and songwriting are similar to Mercyful Fate or Venom if Venom were infinitely more skilled with their instruments. The sound could be considered low-fi, but appealingly so, all of the instruments sound incredibly organic and un-modified which adds immensely to the album's overall sound, and calls back to the less digital tone present on the metal albums of the 70s and 80s.

Vocally the album alternates primarily between Thrash/Death metal style growls/shouts,  which have a bit of a Vader quality to them and suit the musics sound bizarrely well,  and high pitched King Diamond style falsetto. That said, the latter style is dispersed widely enough that if you're one of those folks who hates King Diamonds vocals and can't listen to them without giggling (you know who you are), you should still be able to enjoy the album.

Tracks like "Hordes of The Goat Kult", "Necromancer", "The Devils Soldiers" which is probably the most black metal track on the album, and "Black Speed Thunder" exemplify the best of what the album has to offer, with fun riffs, memorable vocals, and the bands uniquely energetic approach to old school black metal. While the riffs and song structures do get a tad repetitive as the album progresses, the pros heavily outweigh the cons, and if you're a fan of good, energetic, old school black metal, OBSESSÖR is definitely worth checking out.

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