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Altar - And God Created Satan To Blame For His Mistakes

And God Created Satan To Blame For His Mistakes
by Max Elias at 01 September 2019, 6:54 PM

These Dutchmen deliver a raucous Death Metal EP in "And God Created Satan to Blame For His Mistakes", a title that sounds BEHEMOTH-y. Those comparisons only get easier as you listen to the album. “Throne of Fire” opens with a choir sample before the music starts. Once it does, it’s a masterclass in sledgehammering Death Metal. The drumming is spastic and urgent without resorting to long strings of blasts, and the guitars hover somewhere between Death/Thrash and Brutal Death Metal. Aside from the vocals and occasional lead break, the drumming is the most prominent aspect of the song. And those vocals are savage; Edwin Kelder’s voice is a midrange growl that is more ferocious than lower vocals.

“Forced Imprudence” is a slower starter, with the band delving into OBITUARY territory in the intro. Long chords, moaning growls, and sparse drumming set an ominous tone before the band puts on a burst of speed with riffs similar to those found on “Throne of Fire”. There ceases to be coherently identifiable riffing after a while, just madness, as the drums once again overpower everything. The vocals are no help either if one seeks coherency.

The most guitar-oriented song here is third track “Psycho Damn”, coming in with more of a Thrash than Death Metal energy, although the relentless percussive assault remains unchanged. The first riff is textbook Thrash from a time before Death Metal, as is the riff before the solo. This is definitely my favorite of the four songs featured, solely for the audibility of the riffs.

The last song, “Cross the Bridge of False Prophecies”, is almost as long as the entire rest of the EP. Despite that, it only has about a minute of buildup before launching into the manic percussion-dominated assault so familiar to the band. It also isn’t afraid to get evil—there is a break around three minutes in where some dissonant harmonics and lead lines take the stage. As for the faster parts of the song, aside from hearing the occasional note or two in a riff, everything but raw aggression gets lost in the frenzy. When they slow down again and a longer solo comes in, it’s one of the more headbangable moments of the whole EP.

I feel like the amount someone will like this EP depends a lot on how much they appreciate drummers. The drum work is fantastic on this, but is also about 80% of the mix at any given moment. I personally would have wanted to hear more riffing from the guitars come through, as after a while the relentless pounding starts to lose its virtuosic appeal, and even to get a little draining. Drummers are the most important members of any metal band, but at the same time sound the blandest on their own. But I understand that blistering speed and power take precedence in this style.

Songwriting: 7
Originality: 7
Memorability: 6
Production: 8

3 Star Rating

1. Throne of Fire
2. Forced Imprudence
3. Psycho Damn
4. Cross the Bridge of False Prophecies
Edwin Kelder - Vocals
Marcel van Haaf - Guitars
Bert Huisjes - Guitars
Nils Vos - Bass
Marco Arends – Drums
Record Label: Raw Skull Recordz


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Edited 08 February 2023

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