Monday, December 9, 2013

Wulf's Official Response to Decibel Magazine's Top 100 Black Metal Albums (part 3)

80. "In the Streams of the Inferno" - Mysticum

I know next to nothing about Mysticum except that they were playing black metal in Norway in the early '90s and and did a split with Ulver in '94. Other than that I guess this is some sort of forgotten classic? Like a lot of these albums on this half (100-50) of the list I'll have to check it out later. Sorry guyz.

79. "Fex Urbis Lex Orbis" - Ludicra

Man, part 3 of this list is starting out pretty badly. No matter how hard I tried, I couldn't get into Ludicra when they were all the rage several years ago. I know Judge Dredd was all over them, but for whatever reason they just didn't click for me. Add this to the growing pile of albums from this list I should probably revisit.

78. "Om" - Negură Bunget

OK, finally a band I know something about!! I've been interested in these dudes ever since I read an interview with them in Metal Maniacs (RIP) a long time ago where they talked about how their take on black metal was heavily inspired by Romanian folk tales, legends, and mysticism. Sign me up!!
Anyway, many people consider "Om" to be their best album (and if IIRC one of Terrorizer Magazine's Top 10 metal albums of the 2000s!), but unfortunately I'm still not too familiar with their stuff, even though I really like what I've heard!! I'm still pissed I didn't get to see these guys when they came to Sydney, but it was one of my first days at a new job!! :(

77. "Darkspace I" - Darkspace

I'm listening to this CD right now!! From what I can tell, it's somewhat similar to Wroth's other one-man BM band Paysage d'Hiver, except I prefer the latter. Paysage has a more varied sound, and his ambient stuff rules!! Really great for D&D (even if Professor Grindstein thought it sounded like NPR's Hearts of Space, bah!). Anyway, if you want unrelenting, emotionless, cold and uncaring black metal, then knock yourself out!

76. "Phoenix Rising" - Destroyer 666

Yeah!! Finally an album I'm somewhat familiar with!! Maybe it was because I was in Australia, but while living in Sydney I listened to this album all the time on the way to work!! I'd say "Lone Wolf Winter" is arguably the best song on the album, but almost the entire thing is chock full of killer riffs and savage energy. I don't know if I'd necessarily count this is a black metal album, but whatever. I'd say this is actually a pretty good spot on the list for this album!

75. "Written in Waters" - Ved Buens Ende

I haven't listened to much of this album, but based on what I've heard I think this album sucks and don't know why so many people like it! Maybe it's just too "weird" or whatever, maybe it's because the vocals are lame, maybe it's because the cover art blows, but if we're making a Top 100 black metal albums list then this would definitely not be one of my selections. Sorry, but no thanks!!

74. "Fas - Ite, Maledicti, in Ignem Aeternum" - Deathspell Omega

Even though it took me awhile to get into Deathspell just because they're style is so unorthodox, this is a great album, even if it is arguably the weakest of the "trilogy" that makes up their three latest full-lengths. Anyway, not too sure what to say about this record other than that it's dark, evil, disorienting, and has done a lot in taking black metal to a new, more intellectual and philosophical level.

73. "Battles in the North" - Immortal

One of my favorite Immortal albums!! I remember first checking out Immortal back in the Kazaa days and downloading as many black metal music videos as I could find. Besides Emperor's "The Loss and Curse of Reverence" and Satyricon's "Mother North", "Grim and Frostbitten Kingdoms" was arguably my favorite, even though not much happens in the music video. I think I just liked the song the time, I didn't understand why the band was perhaps trying to sound like shit on purpose and was mainly into stuff like Dimmu Borgir, Borknagar, and In Flames. Anyway, it took me awhile but Immortal's pre-"At the Heart of Winter" sound really grew on me. I started realizing that crystal-clear production wasn't everything, and while "Sons of Northern Darkness" sounded awesome, there was a certain charm and mysterious atmosphere that went with this record's icy, hyperspeed riffing and blasting, rickety drums.

72. "Maranatha" - Funeral Mist

Always wanted to check out Mortuus' solo project, but didn't realize anything he had put out was critically acclaimed!! I'll investigate soon!

71. "Ultima Thulée" - Blut aus Nord

Seriously?? I guess it's a kvlt album and shit, but I found it to be kind of cheesy, amateurish, forgettable, and nowhere near as great as Blut aus Nord's later stuff!! Maybe I'm missing the point, as this is a much more dark, grim take on Nordic mythology (usually a lyrical theme completely beaten to death at this point by ever viking/folk metal band ever), but still!! I'm still working on BaN's earlier albums, but as far as I can tell the band didn't become truly relevant until "The Work Which Transforms God" (2003), which was also the leader in a renaissance of twisted French black metal that is still going strong today!! Anyway, sorry but I don't believe this album is good enough to be on here.

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