Sunday, September 02, 2007

A Call To Witness Unblack Metal

As I said in a previous post, Antestor is one of Norway's earliest Christian extreme metal bands. Over the years they have bounced around different labels and have undergone, from what I gather, a complete over haul of members. It has not been an easy road for these guys being a Christian metal band in the midst of a satanic black metal scene.

Norway is notorious for their black metal evilness with church burning and band members murdering one another. It would seem intimidating to step into this scene as a Christian band, but that's what Antestor did and by that have received serious death threats and Euronymous of Mayhem is even quoted as saying ~ The Militants of Norwegian black metal will force this band to split up. ~

Antestor is still playing (albiet with a fresh line-up featuring several members of Vaakevandring another Norwegian Christian black metal band) and are producing some brutal and bleak extreme metal.

Antestor are now signed to Endtime records who released their first full length album "Martyrium" 2 years after Cacophonous released and pulled their sophomore album "The Return Of The Black Death". And so without further ado, let me tell you about "Martyrium".

"Martyrium" is the transition album of Antestor styles. It continues with the doom heavy feel and sickly death metal vocals of "The Defeat Of Satan/Despair" ep's, but adds a black metal styling to the mix. This is raw brutal extreme metal with a bleak and sorrowful feel and touches of hope. A passionate album.

The album kicks off with black metally riffed "Spiritual Disease" which is mid-paced and doomy with spurts of speed and vomitous death metal vocals. "Materialistic Lie" is a bit faster and more black metally both with added black metal screaches and guitar style. The title track "Martyrium" is most like where Antestor would go on their next release. It is an instrumental atmospheric melodic black metal tune.

"Searching" and "Thoughts" continue in the doom death style of their demos with a touch more melody. "Thoughts" features some soprano vocal melodies of the opening keyboard melody which adds a nice atmosphere to the album feel. "Under The Sun" is one of my favourite tracks in the doom death style, though slightly more black metally. The crunchy breakdown is awesome and the solo is nice.

"Mercy Lord" is hymn-like with its organ style keyboards and doomy undertones. The song is reminiscent of their cover of the Norwegian hymn "Jesus, Jesus Ver Du Hja Meg" but with uber deathy vocals. A brutally uplifting song.

My favourite tracks are "Depressed" with its sweetly melodic piano opening and baritone vocals which create a sombre feel to its doomy chorus and deathy vocals. A beautifully tragic mix and a sorrowful song. My Favourite I have to say is "Inmost Fear". This song is creepy with a mix of clean guitars and death metal vocals, a disturbing mix. Add to that the crushing doom-laden chorus and you have one heck of a brutal tune.

"Martyrium" is a raw heavy album with enough black metal influences to ease the transition for the listener into their follow up black metal opus "The Return Of The Black Death". Although I prefer this doom/death metal style more, the full on black metal sound is still done very well, and I'll be reviewing that on "The Return Of The Black Death" next week.


Blogger etain_lavena said...

sounds like they stood their ground even if they all changed in form;)

I dont like when it sounds like they are puking, I gag to easily...whahahaha:)

1:49 PM  

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