Friday, 24 February 2012

Sanhedrin - Salvation Through Sin

Self Released 2010

1.Unrestrained Soul Of Leviathan 2.Now I See The Truth
3.The Holy Sons 1: In The Gardens Of Gethsemane
4.The Holy Sons 2: In The Fields Of Akeldama 5.A Deceptive Dreamlike State
6.Salvation Through Sin 7.Eternal Battle Of Faiths
8.Into The Emerald Dream 9.Of The Infernal Legion 10.The Second Coming
11.Utterly Bereft Of Life

Sweeping synths cascade back and forth, accompanied by some melodic, yet menacing guitar work on opening track ‘Unrestrained Soul Of Leviathan’, the momentum slowly gathering and creating the atmosphere (and acting as the albums intro) for the following track ‘Now I See The Truth’ which is another menacing creation. Musically the band are driven by death metal with hints of black metal added, especially through the use of atmospheric keyboard work. The pace remains slow to mid-paced but this is what creates the eerie and menacing feel  seen here. ‘The Holy Sons 1: In The Gardens Of Gethsemanne’ is a slightly more black metal affair, razor sharp tremolo picked guitars prevalent throughout much of the track and as ever, the vocals are typically hateful and scathing. There’s a lot of melody injected into this track but it never loses it black metal feel. Keyboards used very sparingly, but when used only add to the atmosphere extremely well.

‘The Holy Sons 2: In The Fields Of Afeldama’ continues the theme seen in the previous track and if anything is as black metal as the band have sounded so far. Ice cold riffing accompanied by blasting drums and the keyboards once again injecting the eeriness very subtly in the background. ‘A deperitive Dream-Life State’ is atmospheric keyboard interlude, a very short piece and breaks up the tracks well. ‘Salvation Through Sin’ begins almost as a continuation of the previous interlude, opening up with melodic keyboards and bass guitar. This doesn’t last long however, the ‘Dimmu Borgir’ esque riffing and keyboard work really beginning to shine here, no clones however, the band definitely have their own sound. ‘Eternal Battle Of Faiths’ has a slightly more death metal feel, some of the guitars particularly heavy and although different from the previous tracks, doesn’t sound out of place and actually complements the more black metal sections well. There’s a real epic feeling being created, the tension in the track increasing the further into it you delve…a sense that something nasty is about to happen which unfortunately it doesn’t. No surprises or massive finish to the track, the pace is increased slightly, but that’s about it. ‘Into The Emerald Dream’ is another keyboard led short interlude with accompanying guitars and drums and whilst all well played ends up sounding something and nothing, heading nowhere other than a pause before ‘Of The Infernal Legion’ opens up. Another slow to mid-paced affair to begin with until the pace is upped into more familiar black metal territory, blasting drums and blazing guitars. A lot of maiden-esque riffing on display which is really good and shows off some of the bands childhood influences maybe.
‘The Second Coming’ begins with more melodic and atmospheric classical keyboard work before blasting in with thrash tinged black metal riffing, a real ice cold feel here, especially when the keyboards are introduced, pure evil atmosphere! Things really start to get brutal as well, something that should maybe have been used a lot more to really make the whole cd kick you in the face, something many of the previous tracks just didn’t do. ‘Utterly Bereft Of Life’ acts an outro, keyboards used to the max and probably the right way to end this album, a haunting air of desperation being created. This cd is an older release from 2010 and is the band’s debut album which is maybe what makes some of the tracks feel like they’re having an identity crisis, not really knowing what genre to sit in, death metal or black metal? It’s not so much a criticism, just maybe an explanation and a pointer to a band finding its identity through  a multitude of different influences.  That said, it’s a great introduction to the band and a very respectable debut full length of promising black (with some death) metal.

7 out of 10

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