Friday, July 27, 2012

Setherial - Hell Eternal

I seriously cannot stand all this "true" and "kult" bullshit. Somehow to be considered a good black metal band/album, one must have the worst production possible, angsty Satanic/pagan lyrics and just more general shittiness than should ever be allowed. Why bands like Burzum, Mayhem, the shitty half of Darkthrone's catalog have come to be legendary and worshipped is beyond me. Setherial were part of the Swedish black metal wave that started rolling in during the mid 90s. I'm sure the so-called "purists" will say that their first two albums are the best because they sound like less produced and muddy, but Hell Eternal is where shit started getting real. The production on this album is a lot clearer so you can actually hear what the hell is going in. The guitars and drumming are a lot tighter, the vocals aren't necessarily memorable in style but the intensity is all there. The title song, "The Aeschma Daeva" and "The Sign of Wrath Awakened" all showcase an improvement in songwriting and playing that wasn't really prominent (but still present) on their previous releases. The one main drawback to this album is that after a while, the songs pretty much start to meld together and it gets repetitive. Much like their Swedish brethren Marduk, Setherial play a much faster, more aggressive style of black metal, which never wavers throughout this album. Setherial is definitely a band that has gotten better with time as their most recent releases have shown, but Hell Eternal is where they started to emerge as a force to be reckoned with.

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