Rating:
7.3
Enthral - Obtenebrate
16 March 2012


01. Obtenebrate
02. The Gospel Of Woe
03. Lay Waste The Crops
04. Pallbearer
05. Sepulchre
06. On To The Never
07. The 7th Wave
08. Within The Tomb
09. Fields Of Death
10. Deaths Drum


After the release of a seemingly neglected EP and a re-release of a cult classic from the '90s two years ago, Enthral have finally come around to releasing a new full-length album by way of Obtenebrate. Beginning with the end of the story, fans won't be disappointed.

What these guys have been praised for in the past is what they'll likely receive praise for from those who've followed the band's career over the course of the last 10 years: melody. Or not. This time around you get the added bonus of groove. And that will probably grab more ears than some well-executed melodies.

Groove. In a melodic black metal release. Who knew?

Enthral still retain that sense of evil synonymous with occult black metal outfits, not to mention virtually any black metal band from Norway. The music has a genuinely eerie vibe to it, more or less similar to Slayer's Reign in Blood. You can almost feel the sardonic wrath behind each song, as if being dragged into the fiery pits of hell by Kjetil himself. While it does seem to borrow heavily from the Sodoms and Slayers of yore, this is still primarily a black metal release. It just happens to have a slightly thrashy edge more noticeable in certain songs (such as "Lay Waste the Crops"). Because being too melodic is for pussies. Yeah.

Another thing to make note of is the track lengths. With the exception of the intro, the majority of the songs run upwards of six minutes. "The Gospel of Woe" jumps out at 12 minutes, and Enthral prove they have the writing talents to make such lengthy songs work in their favor. Not only do these marathon-esque compositions lay the foundation for an atmosphere that screams repugnance, but your ears get to feast on some excellent riffs and chaotic drum work. Be prepared for a bit of a journey, however, as this album surpasses the 60-minute mark.

All in all Obtenebrate is a satisfying release that should garner a bit more attention than an EP or re-release, yet it lacks any sort of "wow" factor. It will definitely get by on its cult vibe and vile atmosphere, but unfortunately this just doesn't live up to the same quality as Prophecies of the Dying. The infusion of some groove elements and lengthy songs are both nice touches, but their fingerprints fade with the passing of time.

Performance: 8
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 6
Production: 8


Band profile: Enthral
Album: Obtenebrate


 



Written on 20.04.2012 by
Troy Killjoy
Just another opinionated guy telling you what to listen to.
More reviews by Troy Killjoy ››



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Boxcar Willy - 20.04.2012 at 07:14  
To Youtube.
Daniell - 20.04.2012 at 17:51  
I started writing a review of this album yesterday It's good I didn't go past the first paragraph. All in all I like it a bit more, my rating would be 7.7 maybe.
Troy Killjoy - 20.04.2012 at 18:14  
Written by Daniell on 20.04.2012 at 17:51
All in all I like it a bit more, my rating would be 7.7 maybe.

Initially that was my exact rating, but a few extra listens kind of knocked it down a bit. It's most likely due to the length, but I'd still readily suggest any black metal fans check these guys out regardless.
Mr. Doctor - 20.04.2012 at 19:02  
Hey, this shit is pretty solid. Me likes it. Great no-bullshit riffs.
Verdun_sc - 21.04.2012 at 01:09  
The riffing is pretty fantastic throughout. I gave it a 9 but it's probably an 8.5 really. The issue for me was partly length, and partly the fact that it seemed like they were unwilling to use those awesome instrumental breaks we know they're capable of from Prophecies of the Dying and other earlier material. Still, really really good for me, if not in the same league as Prophecies of the Dying.
Array - 21.04.2012 at 17:46  
Sardonic Wrath mentioned.
Troy Killjoy - 21.04.2012 at 17:49  
Written by Array on 21.04.2012 at 17:46
Sardonic Wrath mentioned.

It was subtle but I figured most people would catch it.

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