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Celtic Frost - Monotheist (CD)

Celtic Frost
by Elina Papadoyianni at 01 May 2006, 4:11 PM

No doubt that Celtic Frost has been a major influence to Dark/Extreme Metal, as well as Gothic Metal genres and has created music trends, which have been followed by numerous well-known bands and even more. Their new release, Monotheist is in a few words a reminder of why this band has filled a grand space in extreme Metal's Hall of Fame.
The Swiss/American Celtic Frost, previously known as Hellhamer, made their smashing entry into the Metal scene with their debut album Morbid Tales (1984) and the subsequent EP Emperor's Return (1985) and deeply rooted their sound into the unsuspected minds. The band's co-founders and co-writers are Tom Gabriel Fisher (a.k.a. Tom Gabriel Warrior - vocals and guitars) and Martin Eric Ain (bass). The second album of the band, To Mega Therion (1985), included orchestral elements and became a landmark record, but it wasn't until 1987 when Celtic Frost released the album Into The Pandemonium and raised the bar even higher with a record that combined melodic Metal with plain brutality.
The downfall, though, was around the corner, where problems arose between Celtic Frost and the record company, Noise Records, having as a result more than twelve months of legal disagreements, which led the band to a devastating point. After a new record deal and a new lineup, the band released Cold Lake in 1988, which virtually disappointed a major part of their fans. Vanity/Nemesis (1990), produced by Roli Mosimann (Faith No More, Marilyn Manson, Bjork) and with Martin Eric Ain back on the scene, was a strong comeback and managed to bring Celtic Frost back on track. The next release was Patched With Thirst Am I And Dying in 1992, including a lot of unreleased musical and visual material.
So here we are, 14 years later, with Celtic Frost signing with Century Media and releasing the current album, Monotheist, produced by them and co-produced by Peter Tagtgren (Hypocrisy, Dimmu Borgir, Immortal). Heavy and dark sound, with rhythmic riffs and some detailed updates. From the first few minutes the well-known and so familiar shouted growl of Fisher makes its appearance, as well as some flashbacks, bringing back memories of their 80's sound. Surrounded by Doom/Heavy riffing and heavy-footed sound are tracks like My Domain Of Decay, Progeny and Ain Elohim.
Another perspective is revealed in songs like A Dying God Coming Into Human Flesh, Os Abysmi Vel Daath and Obscured, where a slow, theatrical sound prevails including clean vocals from Tom Fisher, combined with Goth female vocals. A surprising ending follows with a triptych. The first part, Totengott, is a dark/atmospheric track with distorted freakish vocals, opening way for the fantastic Synagoga Satanae, followed by the Winter, a calm, mourning, orchestral requiem.
Surely a worthy effort and a great return by Celtic Frost. The band shows great confidence and it's more determined than ever to make an outstanding comeback. Loyal fans will start tearing their clothes apart when they listen to it and the Metal audience will be more than satisfied.

4 Star Rating

A Dying God Coming Into Human Flesh
Drown In Ashes
Os Abysmi Vel Daath
Domain Of Decay
Ain Elohim
Synagoga Satanae
Tom Gabriel Fisher - Vocals & Guitars
Martin Eric Ain - Bass & Vocals
Franco Sesa - Drums
Record Label: Century Media Records


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