I’ve put this off for a while because I wanted to give it a fair shot. Now, this is not a bad album. It is actually a very good, if not great, album. But I’ve been listening to a lot of Darkthrone so I am smacked in the face by the lads obvious influences and it makes the whole thing very much feel derivative of the best from the second wave of Norwegian black metal.
That said; this album taken on its own terms is really good. Luciferian Rites has its brutal own brand of black metal that shines through the album like well a light in the darkness. The overall severe sadness and melancholic mood adds to the punch of each track. “Ghost in the Shadows” is the band’s best stamp on the SDBM fringe.
The production is top notch; there was an effort to make this sound heavy and powerful compared to the overall distorted approach and I think this really helps the band stand out. “Rotten Creed” is one of those tracks that could sound like any other black metal track but the smooth mastering and bass guitar clarity give everything a huge boost. I love the bass in the into to “Garden of Spirits”; it is hard to get the bass right in black metal (I was mixing black metal bass last night, I know). Kudos!
The tracks mentioned above are real treats within the record but you find new “favourites” with every listen. The opener “Eternal Misanthropy of the Black Cosmos” is the longest of the album and toys with the tropes of black metal; as it jumps back and forth musical movements to create a really satisfying whole.
“Conviction of Nocturnal Raven” and “Incinerated Cross” have the potential to sound the most like Darkthrone. These were the two tracks the made me sit on this review due to that fact. However, they’re your paint by the numbers tracks and taken within this album help its gloomy corpus.
“All You Lies” is a fun fast tempo black metal romp; and it the most different of the album. The vocals are killer on this one; Count Shadow is a passable vocalist for the most part of this release but it great on this track. “A Dreadful Chant for Self-Destruction” is my personal favourite of the entire record. It is beautifully haunting and like “Ghost in the Shadows” sits on SDBM fringe without dwelling on it. I love this track. It’s stellar and is one of the best black metal tracks I have ever heard.
Overall, if you’re looking for new black metal then give these guys a shot. It will take a few listens to enjoy it but when it clicks you’ll have a good time. I look forward to Luciferian Rites’ next work.
Luciferian Rites are:
Abomination – Guitars
Count Shadow – Vocals
Antichrist – Drums
- Eternal Misanthropy of the Black Cosmos
- Incinerated Cross
- Infernal Manifestation
- When the Light Dies
- Rotten Creed
- Conviction of Nocturnal Raven
- Garden of Spirits
- A Dreadful Chant for Self-Destruction
- All Your Lies (Diabolical Memories)
- Ghost in the Shadows