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Belphegor - Walpurgis Rites - Hexenwahn (CD)

Walpurgis Rites - Hexenwahn
by Dimitris Kontogeorgakos at 25 October 2009, 8:50 AM

Nope, I did not see that coming! A new BELPHEGOR album a year after the solid as Hell Bondage Goat Zombie was simply too much. I was thinking that maybe the success of the aforementioned album 'pushed' the band from Austria to produce a new album to take fully advantage of the gathered momentum. I am more than glad to admit that I was 100% wrong! After having pushed the play button on my poor CD player, Hell unleashed upon me.
I am not kidding; Walpurgis Rites opens the album and literally grabs you by throat with Helmut chord tormenting scream and the solid wall built by the fast guitar and battering drums. There is no room to move or even think; the chorus lines hit you in total blasphemy while the early SLAYER-esque guitar fills open the gates of Hell. This is not a 'quickie done' album since BELPHEGOR sound solid and in a top form. The tracks travel among the Black Metal territories with shredding and repetitive riffs while keeping the Death Metal backbone strong as ever. Veneratio Diaboli - I Am Sin is another Satanic song with amazing guitars that cleverly have been put in the front, a courtesy of a well done sound production. Helmuth is simply destroying his vocal chords singing I am Satan, I hear your voice sending massive shivers down your spine. The complexity of the guitars made me think of VITAL REMAINS and their Dave Suzuki insane days but in BELPHEGOR's way. The guitars take this album in a higher level than Bondage Goat Zombie underlying the fact that this band has not remained still. Just crank the volume up during the guitar solo of this track to really understand my saying. It is time for romance and Hail The New Flesh is the perfect soundtrack; this song is closer to Bondage Goat Zombie and features 'loving' lyrics like this: Fuck you, you fucking whore. Add to that the female screams and you will get into this atmosphere we all enjoyed in the previous album. This is BELPHEGOR's signature sound that has been solidified after 15 years from the release of their demo Bloodbath In Paradise.
But speed is not the only element here; the Austrian band has proved that can also handle slower tempos keeping the word 'heavy' in bold and capital letters. Der Geistertreiber is the absolute example with a ton heavy groove that sounds totally satanic with the almost spoken lyrics and the siren sounds that in a bizarre way remind me of the opening sample in VENOM's concerts. This track is also the first video clip (you can view it below) characterized by occult footage taken from horror films of the 70s.
I can go on forever writing my thoughts for this album but it is time to close this review. I cannot say that BELPHEGOR have reached the highest point composing wise but they have created the best album in their back catalog. Death and Black Metal mixed perfectly in a finest mold with a pure satanic direction that is simply the icing on the cake. Helmuth sounds more evil than before while the guitars reveal some melodic lines that are ideally enjoyed in the highest possible volume. The album will be also available in a double vinyl edition for maximum pleasure. There is nothing to be said here; this is a must-buy case ever if you have a blindfold covering your eyes.
PS: The outro-like song Hexenwahn - Totenkult comprise additional melodic lines and might reveal the next addition to the already tempting BELPHEGOR sound.

4 Star Rating

Walpurgis Rites
Veneratio Diaboli - I Am Sin
Hail The New Flesh
Reichswehr In Blood
The Crosses Made Of Bone
Der Geistertreiber
Destroyer Hekate
Enthralled Toxic Sabbath
Hexenwahn - Totenkult
Helmuth - Vocals, Guitar
Morluch - Guitar
Serpenth - Bass
Nefastus - Session drums
Record Label: Nuclear Blast Records


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