ALBUM REVIEW: Goddess – Slægt

SLÆGT could very well be one of the finest examples of Danish black metal and have earned their place at the forefront of the country’s small but vibrant scene. With three full albums and the criminally underrated 2015 EP beautiful and cursed practically marking the band for international fame, they have seen their sound shift from a more traditional melodic black metal approach in their early years to an impressive blend of black and heavy metal more recently, most notably with their latest album Wheel. The band’s latest album, and the first for Media Records of the Century, Goddesssees their sound grow even further and is the best possible introduction to a much wider audience than they could hope for.

The album opens with Deceived by an amethyst, an incredibly dramatic opening gambit that combines dark heavy metal riffs with caustic, growling vocals, making everything sound dark and ominous. It’s a great marriage between classic metal and subtle, well-placed blackened components, offering an interesting take on a timeless formula. Kiss of a knife turns out to be an intense piece of music, bordering on chaotic at times, with lots of tight, focused moments punctuated by frenetic, raging moments. The vocals remain the one constant, with harsh but steady barking intertwined with the swirling guitars, thunderous bass hooks and intricate drumming, making for a song that perfectly captures the band’s more polished and contrasting unpredictability in equal measure. measure.

hunt again is a much fiercer and headier affair, with monolithic, muddy bass and drums serving as the perfect backdrop for soaring, imaginative guitars that move from impressive shredding to slower, jarring passages that see the music lean more. strongly towards a black metal sound without ever fully embracing it. This one delivers a generous dose of traditional metal even during the song’s most aggressive moments, seamlessly blending the two in a way that keeps this long track engrossing and enticing throughout.

Fealty, Thunder Whip has a great classic heavy metal feel to it, with a distinct offbeat edge that makes it all the more intriguing. Razor-sharp guitar work, peppered with superb melodic flourishes and a subtle yet effective jarring undercurrent really elevates this track, keeping it firmly grounded in a tried-and-true sound while playing with the established formula and adding the the band’s own flavor in the mix. Stabat Bloody Stabat serves as a short but incredibly effective interlude that acts as a hypnotic and powerful break in the album, the atmospheric approach making it a great prelude to the album’s final number, Goddess.

This last track is a beautiful piece of cinematic music that manages to bring together the opposing elements of heavy and black metal in the band’s sound brilliantly. With its cavernous drums, growling basslines and adventurous, varied guitars, plus the ominous growl of the vocals, it’s a track that’s easy to get sucked into. The guitar work here is by far the best on the record, encompassing acoustic sections, crisp metallic rhythms and genuinely stunning melodic leads that cut through the thicker undercurrent of the track and inject a plethora of grand and epic moments into the already fantastic and eclectic music.

Above all, Goddess is the culmination of SLÆGTThe musical metamorphosis has been happening since 2017, when the band began to introduce classic heavy metal influences more prominently into their music. At Domus Mysterium and Wheelit was clear that the band were refining the mix of black and heavy metal in their music, each of them leaning more towards one style, while their 2019 EP black bombs added a great ritual feel to the music. With Goddess, SLÆGT have done an excellent job of distilling all the best components from these three records and allowing them to meld together in an efficient and balanced way, while taking the band’s already exceptional musicality to a new level to make it their most eclectic production, if not impressive. nowadays.

Rating: 9/10

Goddess is available now through Century Media Records.

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