Chuck Schuldiner Project

Friday, May 31, 2019

Darkthrone - Old Star

The kings are back. Darkthrone has long been my absolute favorite black metal band. the diversity of the sound they embraced and their unique take on the genre has consistently impressed me throughout their storied career. Every step you take deeper down the Darkthrone rabbit hole is another step towards sonic absolution. It would thus make sense that a band whose career has always been so varied would put together a record that seems to encapsulate so many different aspects of what they have accomplished over the last thirty years.

While this record doesn't touch on quite as much of the crust side that the band has embraced in recent years, what it does focus on is the tormented anger of black, doom and more traditional heavy metal. The crushing riffs and inherent sense of swagger give even the most brooding moments of Old Star a larger than life feel. These are songs of the world coming apart and a band who have always seemed destined to invoke ever grander spheres of traditional black metal. So yes, Darkthrone wear their influences on their collective sleeve here, but that's what makes it so fun. It's the ripping guitar solos and groovy riffs that keep you entranced.

Old Star continually impresses with its sense of depth and the many layers you can pick apart as you delve ever deeper into this band. These songs are dynamic and exciting, constantly pushing the listener to delve ever deeper into the madness. On this record Darkthrone encapsulate so much of what has made them great, but it never feels like this is a retrospective release. Instead it is simple proof that Darkthrone remain among the best of the best at no matter what side of the metalsphere they wish to tackle.

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