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Altar Of Plagues - Teethed Glory And Injury Award winner

Altar Of Plagues
Teethed Glory And Injury
by Spyros Stasis at 08 April 2013, 7:33 PM

Since the release of “White Tomb” everyone suspected that ALTAR OF PLAGUES was not just another Black Metal band. Those suspicions were verified in their second full length “Mammal”, showing a band that was able to produce excellent songs of towering Black Metal with the addition of experimentations. Now if you think that “White Tomb” and “Mammal” were great records, still there is nothing that can prepare you for the devastation of “Teethed Glory and Injury”.

The first thing that you notice in “Teethed Glory and Injury” is that the length of the songs is more conventional than in the bands previous releases, the longest one being about nine minutes (well yeah it is not really short, but considering that in their previous albums that was their shortest songs length you get the point). Now what you really notice here in terms of the music itself is that the almost out worldly, alien ambiance has been replaced by a grander cinematic one, something that becomes quite obvious from the intro of the album “Mills”.

What you get from that point on is a sonic assault straight to your ears. From when “God Alone” breaks out, the full Black Metal ferocity of ALTAR OF PLAGUES materializes, enriched with an almost VOIVOD-like dissonance on some of the leads and an almost industrial sort of influence in songs such as “A Body Shrouded” (at some point the ambiance is reminiscent to ISIS debut album, “Celestial”), something that becomes even more prominent in the following song, the shattering “Burnt Year”. If that is not enough ALTAR OF PLAGUES takes things a bit further with their ingenious synth sounds influenced from electronic music, which are constantly evolving throughout the album. There are even points when they retract to an almost drone sound, such is the case in the absolutely monumental “Twelve Was Ruin”, the dreamy part of the song which kicks in about two minutes in, acts like a moment of inertia that the band is offering you before you dive back into a sea of deafening Black Metal. Same concept is applied by the band with the next two songs “A Remedy and a Fever” and “Scald Scar of Water” (ending part of the track with the clean vocals is absolutely colossal), both of which come with more tranquil, atmospheric moments before they hammer down you eardrums.

The album finishes off with the destructive “Found Oval and Final” and with the completely dystopian “Reflection Pulse Remains” like the end of a dream (actually more like a nightmare). For me this album is ALTAR OF PLAGUES finest moment yet, it balances between being atmospheric and extreme (the aggressive side of the album has almost a grind like energy), melodic and dissonant, old school and progressive. “Teethed Glory and Injury” is a definite contender for Black Metal album of the year…come to think of it, maybe for just album of the year.

5 Star Rating

1. Mills
2. God Alone
3. A Body Shrouded
4. Burnt Year
5. Twelve Was Ruin
6. A Remedy and a Fever
7. Scald Scar of Water
8. Found Oval and Final
9. Reflection Pulse Remainss
Dave Condon – Bass, Vocals
Johnny King - Drums
James Kelly – Guitars, Keyboards, Vocals
Record Label: Candlelight Records


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Edited 26 November 2022

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