Glorior Belli - The Great Southern Darkness review


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Band: Glorior Belli
Album: The Great Southern Darkness
Release date: September 2011

01. Dark Gnosis
02. Secret Ride To Rebellion
03. They Call Me Black Devil
04. Negative Incarnate
05. Bring Down The Cosmic Scheme
06. The Great Southern Darkness
07. The Foolhardy Venturer
08. Per Nox Regna
09. The Science Of Shifting
10. Chaos Manifested
11. Horns In My Pathway

Five years ago I was surfing through youtube videos looking for new black metal bands to fill in a void ever-growing in me for pure love of the genre. However, I was coming across [band] Darkthrone[/band] clones galore. Then I stumbled across Glorior Belli. At the time Manifesting the Raging Beast was the album they were pushing. While not the most original album it definitely had a certain quality of originality to it and the band definitely had potential to grow. That growth was expressed in the follow up Meet us at the Southern Sign. They evolved incorporating some odd blues/southern rock influences in their still very status quo French black metal sound.

The Great Southern Darkness sees this evolution find its niche. Glorior Belli perfects this black metal/blues/NOLA sound with riffs of speedy, devastatingly dark blast beat ridden ferocity and transitions into groovy dark NOLA influenced southern rocky parts with great accuracy and precision that never seem to be out of place. J displays a great variety and range in his vocals from the raspy dark screams of your general black metal fare to relentless hardcore/death metal growls without it sounding silly or out of place to soothing, saddening downtrodden style clean vocals that are present in the NOLA style. It sounds odd enough but it is done masterfully. The guitar and bass work are phenomenal in this sense as well; it is not easy to transition from a genre as extreme as black metal to the slow doomy sound of NOLA influenced southern rock and blues but great musicians and songwriters find a way and it is done exceptionally well on the album.

The production is crisp and clean but not so clean that the darkness of the album is lost in a sea of over production that robs the music of its edge. It is a bit muddy sounding but by no means the under-produced sonic torment of most black metal albums. It is top notch recording but mastered in a way that adds to the atmosphere and general feel of the darkened swampyness that is the southern sound. All in all it is the perfect balance. Nothing gets lost but it all blends into a nice dark brooding but intricately woven evil sound.

Sometimes genre crossing goes horribly wrong in black metal but Glorior Belli nails it. They have incorporated a new sound in the black metal genre without losing sight of being a black metal band. The Great Southern Darkness establishes a new style of black metal unparalleled in the universe of copycat bands and sets them apart not only in the French black metal scene but in the world metal stage.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 9
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 10
Production: 9

Written by thewaytonever | 24.01.2012


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.

Staff review by
I always thought there was hope, but something was preventing me from believing even more in the arch cause of my nostalgic thoughts. Ô Laudate Dominvs and Manifesting The Raging Beast are two personal favorites from the specific orthodox field of black metal and I'd like to see the band investing even more in the aforementioned scene. Meet Us at the Southern Sign had a different opinion, a more... southern one! Well, yes, this word, southern, abolished all hope I held for the band going back to their sound roots and The Great Southern Darkness is by all means the natural continuation of the aforementioned album.

published 28.09.2011 | Comments (12)

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