Rating:
10
Satyricon - Rebel Extravaganza
6 September 1999


01. Tied In Bronze Chains
02. Filthgrinder
03. Rapsody In Filth
04. Havoc Vulture
05. Prime Evil Renaissance
06. Supersonic Journey
07. End Of Journey
08. A Moment Of Clarity
09. Down South, Up North
10. The Scorn Torrent


Rebel Extravaganza: everything is in the title.
Black Metal is rebellion, and there is no 'sradition? and no fixed ways in a rebellion: Satyr knows and understand it well and he chooses a path, since the beginning of his career, of continuous evolution and breaking of values.
The album opens with some airstirke sirens and explosions, than a main slow guitar riff, than the explosion of sounds: Frost's drumming has never been so precise, fast and cold, [an incredible performance throughout the whole album] and together with Satyr's filtered screaming and the clean sounding -yet raw- guitars it gives to everything a sterile, spacy and ?futuristic? mood.
But, take care, you are not going to find any synth or industrial sound, the ability of the two norweigians is there: to create this athomosphere only with the ?classical? instruments curing much the production stage to make them sound as they wanted to. The result? 10 tracks of pure anger.
In the songwriting we can still hear the typical Satyricon style, yet if possible more varied, sometimes with a touch of hard-rock, sometimes with 'shrashy? stops and go. Satyr's voice is evil and expressive as it's never been before. The recording, the instruments and the sounds are realized, played and chosen with the greatest accuracy, everything sounds compact and ?in the right place?, and every single instrument is perfectly audible.
There are almost no highlights, since every track, both a 9 minutes cold extreme muscial aggression, and a short and gloomy acoustic interlude, has a different feeling.
I want anyway to quote the first words from the lyric of the last song ?The Scorn Torrent?: lyrically basic for the understanding of the spirit of the whole album:

-Break down all conventional forms and create
chaos to reinvent order
Rebel against all circles and dead ends
fight your way with your mind set on the massees
execute with mechanical aggression
arrogance and extravaganze
march an unapproachable
shut out the outside pressure
or are you too weak?-

As I said before Satyr sees his Black Metal as a way to ?Rebel against all circles and dead ends? and, in order to do that, he understand that is necessary to ?Break down all conventional forms and create/ chaos to reinvent order? where the conventional forms are evertything conventional, even the Black Metal stereotypes if they become so. So he chooses the way of the "mechanical aggression", and this album is indeed fast, precise and cold, and it holds a good amount of "arrogance and extravagance".
And finally, chaos is released.
The artwork too presents us the two musicians in a zombie-like make-up, we found no traces of the medieval and nordic mythologial elements, all is coloured in a grim black or in a sterile white. Emblematic is the drawing you can see inside the booklet: Satyricon's typical "runic" symbol is now fragmented, shatterd in a new chaotic form.
Satyr lyrical approach, in this album, goes over the classical Black Metal themes, and explore new territories, even if always throughout Satyr's own misanthropic and apocalyptic personal point of view. Intelligent lyrics, to be understanded, interpreted, something to reflect upon.[?Supersonic Journey? is brilliant]
Only he who dares will achieve something new, and Satyr and Frost with this album have written a basic page of extreme music. As much as Nemesis Divina was important as an apotheosis of the classical Balck Metal values, Rebel Extravaganza pushes the limit furhter on, opening a new way.
So, in the light of what I said before, this IS Black Metal.
And if you don's like it, don's listen it, but pay respect to those who decided to go against the trends- and their own fans -in order to play something just as they feel that it should be played.
That's the real Black Metal spirit, that's the courage to be coherent, that's not ripping-off.
That's simply Satyricon's rebel extravaganza.
Or are you too weak?


Band profile: Satyricon
Album: Rebel Extravaganza


 


written by Sephiroth | 04.10.2003



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Uirapuru - 31.03.2008 at 00:39  
Agree 100% with the review. This is one of the best black metal works in my opinion (along with Burzum's selftitled and Emperor's ''In the nightside eclipse'') and, of course, the best satyricon album, even with the loss of the medieval themes.
Unfortunaly this was the last of satyricon great albuns. Volcano and Now,Diabolical are medium/good works.
Rebel Extravaganza = 10/10.
Motionless - 08.10.2009 at 00:24  
You wrote an excellent review. Well done. It is a masterpiece indeed. So many people failed to understand it. If you ask me I cannot count the times I have listened to it. I will agree with Uirapuru also. It is the last of their good works. Volcano was ok! Diabolical now..... hmmmmmm.... I did not like it at all. Age of nero...Anyway I stil hope for a future release which will approach the quality of this work.
grote_smurf - 10.12.2011 at 02:11  
With an average rating of only 8.2 very underrated; it deserves at least a 9.5; especially "Tied in Bronze Chains", "Supersonic Journey" and "The Scorn Torrent" are brilliant. Sung in the Norwegian language (of course with a translation to English at the inside of the cover) would even be better for the ambiance, in my humble opinion.
Copernicus - 18.05.2013 at 10:07  
Definitely the best Satyricon album...
blackmamba - 09.07.2013 at 06:29  
Art is often misunderstood. This album getting an 8.1 is the perfect example. Rebel Extravaganza is a 10.

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