December 23, 2019 Crest of Darkness – The God of Flesh (Album Review)
Creeping out from within the desolate pits of the underworld comes the newest release from Norwegian Black Metal band Crest of Darkness. The God of Flesh, which was unleashed on Friday, December 6, 2019, is being coined as the heaviest, darkest, and most personal album of their career.
One of the original ideals behind the band was Amlien’s passion for sheer sonic brutality, as well as a devotion to the satanic ideology according to Anton LaVey’s Church of Satan and the Satanic Bible. For the new album, the band worked to delve deep and develop the feel, variety, and depth of their music, a process that proved successful as they seem to present a more cohesive style with Progressive elements despite being known for their aggressive nature. Not since the dawn of their band, back in the early ’90s, has Crest of Darkness been so raw, holding nothing back as current members Ingar Amlien (bass/vocals), Rebo (guitars), and Berhard (drums) deliver some of their best performances to date.
Released via My Kingdom Music, The God of Flesh is a remarkable presentation of Crest of Darkness’ evolution as a band. This album takes their efforts to stay true to their traditional Norwegian Metal influences, complete with all of the carnage and viscera of the work before it, and turns it on its head. Consequently, the album is filled with ferocious passages, a massive wall of guitars, chainsaw bass, demonic vocals and fast drums, all coupled with clever breaks as well as ’70s keys sounds from guest Keyboardist Kristian Wentzel. Together this all makes for a complex and technically demanding arrangement, creating a musical madhouse from which there is no escape.
Let’s dive into some of the songs, shall we? The title track itself starts off like a low growl that can only be described as the sounds you’re about to hear as you enter the gates of hell, and the album doesn’t let up from there. The track “The Child With No Head” is bleak as it boasts lyrics like “Mortal creatures, screams of horror / Women, children/ kill them all / The guns are talking, spill the blood / Human extinction, the final fall.” Its edgy ideals are relayed through guttural screams.
Then there’s “The Spawn of Seth,” a track that plays out like a blueprint for the next installment of The Omen series. Meanwhile, “Forgotten” starts off with a serene vocal melody that quickly becomes eerie as you hear the faint cries of a woman that become more prominent as the track progresses. This serves as an effective interlude.
Surrounding that we have “Euthanasia,” weaving a twisted tale of death, composed of lines such as “Far beyond the threshold of pain, rotting from the inside / Sick and alone, your sacrifices have been in vain / What is it worth, a name on a tombstone / This is the end, it is all done / You are leaving the world of the living, endless days in pain / They are now gone, no existence / No angels are singing.”
Rounding out the album are songs like “Blood,” “Godless Evil Eyes,” and the closing track, “Salvation in Hell.” All of these work to create a terrifying collection of mix-matched influences stemming from their earlier roots and contemporary Black Metal vibes. That said, this album in itself is a clusterfuck of the best parts of Crest of Darkness and the worst parts of society.
In short, The God of Flesh is an unyielding depiction of the new wave that Crest of Darkness is currently riding that doesn’t appear to be letting up any time soon. It’s a solid addition to their discography that holds the best version of themselves and where they’re headed. For this, Cryptic Rock gives The God of Flesh 3 out of 5 stars.
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