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Tsatthoggua – Hallelujah Messiah

Tsatthoggua
Hallelujah Messiah
by Cherie Wong at 26 October 2020, 9:14 PM

On August 28, 2020, TSATTHOGGUA released “Hallelujah Messiah.” TSATTHOGGUA is a German Black Metal band. “Hallelujah Messiah” is a compilation of the band’s earliest recordings from 1995. It’s also the band’s first release of any sort since their 1999 two sided single “German Black Metal.” Most of the material on this album comes from the demo “Siegeswille” from 1995. All of the songs on this album have been remastered to the form presented on this compilation.

The band’s name TSATTHOGGUA is also the name of a toad-like ancient god in the literary works of H.P. Lovecraft and Clark Ashton Smith. This all made sense as soon as I learned that, because the vocals of North Wind sounds like a mad and crazy croaking. The vocalist, along with designer Silere Omnia, also deserves kudos for creating the artwork for this album while infected with coronavirus earlier this year. The first five tracks on this album, which were pulled from the band’s 1995 demo I believe, are a bit raw with lo-fi production. The music is still fast and heavy enough to conjure up an atmosphere of terror. Atmospheric and ethereal keys on the background of these tracks add an overall eeriness. The last two tracks have a cleaner production, though not over produced. These two first appeared on “Trans Cunt Whip” from 1998.

Opening track “The Belief” is a brief introduction to the album and their sound. The pace is just as fast, raw, and heavy as promised. The next track “Heirs Of Fire” is similar to the opening track in style and pace. “Niemals Geboren” is a comparatively slower track, which is a nice change of pace from the previous tracks. The ever present keys, bass, and croaking of the vocalist help the track maintain heaviness despite the moments on the track with a slower pace. Don’t worry, the track speeds back up considerably from the middle onward. On “Intrude Into Immortality”, the music is downright frantic, with the keys and drumming going at full speed. The trend is continued on “Worm Of Sin.” Over the course of the track, things descend into truly mad territory as the vocalist starts repeatedly screaming. It’s maddening and terrifying.

As mentioned previously, the production is notably different with the last two tracks “Status Stürmer” and “Courtesan Mary Slut.” The relentless pace and deranged vocals are still there, but backed by a much better mix of bass, drums, and guitars. The bass is a strong and heady background underlying the music. The guitar riffs are audible and aggressive. These tracks close out the album with a strong finish.

Overall, “Hallelujah Messiah” was a fine black metal album. The thrash elements are in full force, with relentless drumming and fast pace. The production of the first few tracks left a bit to be desired, especially once I heard what the band was capable of later on in the album. The edge of black and thrash was somewhat lost through the compression and rawness for me. That said, I’m sure there are plenty out there that appreciate their Black/Thrash Metal raw, so this album is for you.

Songwriting: 7
Musicianship: 7
Memorability: 7
Production: 6

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. The Belief
2. Heirs Of Fire
3. Niemals Geboren
4. Intrude Into Immortality
5. Worm Of Sin
6. Status Stürmer
7. Courtesan Mary Slut
Lineup:
False Prophet – Bass
Lightning Bolt – Drums
Perverted Pete – Guitars
Nar Marratuk – Guitars
North Wind – Vocals
Record Label: Osmose Productions
     


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