Ancient Rites

This is a true METAL record. It is not black metal, or heavy metal, or thrash metal, but METAL that incorporates elements from each of the styles into a nice synthesis.

The music is mostly fast. The precise rhythm guitar riffing could be from a Sodom or Kreator album. The guitar melodies with major chords are pure Iron Maiden. The lead guitar is somewhat lazy in that the most epic parts are reserved for the keyboard orchestrations, that positively bring to mind Bal-Sagoth, especially in the heroic intro "Avondland". The lyrical content and musical theme of this album is patriotic and inspired from the Middle Ages and this is not a dark album at all.

Battle samples and folk influences in the keyboard parts work surprisingly well together with the true 80ís metal beer-thrash and creates a coherent album of uplifting and strong, if un-innovative battle/drinking music.

The vocals here are mostly shouts trademarked by German thrash, with occasional folkish clean backing voice. Instead of satanic, rebellious and destructive, the nature of this work is rather appreciative, constructive and maybe even conservative and as such, the few satanic songs do not seem to fit the theme. This album will appeal to both folk-nazis and drunk thrashers and it has both itís advantages and itís failures here. The seriousness is partially sacrificed for the nice and easy retroing. Yet, with their straightforward and firm roots, as a live band they probably excel.

© 1999 black hate