Kreator - Phantom Antichrist review
|Release date:||June 2012|
01. Mars Mantra
02. Phantom Antichrist
03. Death To The World
04. From Flood Into Fire
05. Civilisation Collapse
06. United In Hate
07. The Few, The Proud, The Broken
08. Your Heaven, My Hell
09. Victory Will Come
10. Until Our Paths Cross Again
11. Iron Destiny [Japanese bonus]
Disc II [DVD] [Limited edition bonus]
+ Conquerers Of The Ice - The Making Of Phantom Antichrist
+ Harvesting The Grapes Of Horror
Live At Wacken 2011
01. Choir Of The Damned
02. Hordes Of Chaos
03. War Curse
04. Coma Of Souls / Endless Pain
05. Pleasure To Kill
06. Destroy What Destroys You
08. Terrible Certainity / Reconquering The Throne
09. Flag Of Hate / Tormentor
+ Live At Wacken 2008
10. Violent Revolution
11. People Of The Lie
12. Europe After The Pain
Prior to the release, frontman Mille Petrozza claimed that Phantom Antichrist would be the "most epic" Kreator album ever. He went further saying that Phantom Antichrist is better than anything released by the Big Four in recent years. These words seemed to be empty rhetoric at first, but after being taken on the "epic" journey through Phantom Antichrist, the impression is that Petrozza and Co. have succeeded in fulfilling their promises.
The opening two tracks attest to Petrozza's words. The relaxing and soothing "Mars Mantra" slowly lures listeners in the same manner as "Choir of the Damned," creating a sense of serenity while listeners are completely oblivious about the mayhem soon to breakout. The title track blasts out from nowhere, catching the listener completely off guard. The song starts off with a shredding riff in a similar vein to the modern classic "Enemy of God," and maintains its ability to captivate by a memorable chorus and an epic solo from guitarist Sami Yli-Sirnio.
The intense and brutal aspect of the title track is further manifested in future live staples such as "Civilization Collapse" and "Death to the World." But the most pleasing aspect of the album is not simply the intensity, instead it is the epic melodies, guitar solos, memorable choruses and seamless transitions from intense parts to the melodic and back that create the greatest satisfaction. The listener gains a stronger understanding of Kreator's views about the current state of the world through the epic musical journey because the varied emotions at particular instances provide the incentive to think about the lyrics through a deeper and more critical approach. These incentives are to be best seen in "From Flood into Fire," a marching song about hope and unity. The mood goes from uplifting such as in the chorus and dueling guitar solos, to one of sadness and sorrow in the clean vocals. Another example is the skillfully and tastefully performed guitar solo by Sami Yli-Sirnio in "Your Heaven, My Hell," with the soaring melodies implying bliss and delight at the end of religious oppression.
While Kreator have explored the epic aspects extensively, it does not go off on a tangent and Kreator never deviate from their thrash roots. Mille Petrozza's guitar riffs are brilliant, contributing to the unrelenting nature of the intense parts, but also providing a solid platform for Sami Yli-Sirnio's epic solos and melodic leads. Ventor's drum-work are merciless to the ears when required by the songs and complement the songs extremely well when intensity is not the sole priority at certain moments. Mille Petrozza's aggressive vocals are as strong as ever, showing no signs of letting down.
Phantom Antichrist contains all the classic Kreator trademarks of crushing speed and brutality while slight alterations such as excellent epic solos and soaring melodies create the pleasing and inspiring sense of a being taken on a musical journey. Kreator kept the balance between maintaining heaviness and having epic melodic moments extremely well considering the breadth of the music. Indeed, Phantom Antichrist is the "most epic" Kreator album ever, given the variety of emotions contained and the seamless transitions between the extremes of these emotions that make it stand out from the latest offerings from the Big Four.
|Kreator! Aaaaaaahhhhh! That is all I need to state to introduce this review. 13th studio album from the reigning kings of Teutonic Thrash Metal and rightfully regarded as one of the most respected Metal bands of all time. Anybody wants to disagree with that? I thought not. It is refreshing to see a musical style best known for its impact on the 1990s still being alive and well in 2012.
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