Darkthrone - Dark Thrones And Black Flags review



Reviewer:
8.7

184 users:
7.22
Band: Darkthrone
Album: Dark Thrones And Black Flags
Release date: October 2008


01. The Winds They Called The Dungeon Shaker
02. Oath Minus
03. Hiking Metal Punx
04. Blacksmith Of The North
05. Norway In September
06. Grizzly Trade
07. Hanging Out In Haiger
08. Dark Thrones And Black Flags
09. Launchpad To Nothingness
10. Witch Ghetto


It's another year and that means another offering from Darkthrone's dynamic duo of Gylve "Fenriz" Nagell and Ted "Nocturno Culto" Skjellum. Their latest opus, "Dark Thrones and Black Flags" marks their fifth release in the last six years and their 14th release since 1991's "Soulside Journey."

"Dark Thrones…" continues to see the band fuse elements of their traditional sound as well as their metal and punk influences into one caustic witches brew. The end result is that "DKaBF" sounds like the bastard union of their take on the more traditional metal sound of "F.O.A.D." with the bombast and energy of their crustpunk influenced "The Cult is Alive" - and it's a damn enjoyable album.

Their latest effort clocks in at the usual near 40 minutes, this time with a full 10 tracks whereas in the past most Darkthrone albums had six to eight songs. The end result is songs that are shorter, more driven, and more to the point.

The strongest aspect of the new album is the guitar work. Guitar duties were split between Nocturno and Fenriz, and it seems both showed up at Necrohell II studio with their "A" material. For the most part, the songs are dynamic, shifting riffs and tempos, and each song as at least one really cool riff that makes you take notice. Nothing earth-shattering that will have <insert your favorite axe deity here> furrowing his brow and spending hours sequestered in the back of the tour bus trying to decipher, but good, solid metal craftsmanship that will have you tossing the horns and raising some pints.

Vocal duties, as with the riff creation duties, were split between Gylve and Ted. The vocals were slightly annoying at first as they're all recorded a little heavy on the reverb, but that was easy to get used to/over on repeated listens. They do get a bit expressive at times, much to my chagrin, as with the slightly over dramatic chorus to the opening track… "the winds… they called… THE DUNGEON SHAKERRRRRRR!!!, but it all adds to the enjoyment of the album.

Fenriz put in a Fenriz-like performance behind the kit, with the drums pounding along, propelling the songs forward purposefully. As with the riffing, nothing fancy, just a good workmanlike skins to back-up the riffs and keep the energy high.

Production is pretty much what you'd expect from Darkthrone. They've their own portable studio. They pick a weekend, they each bring their respective instruments and a couple cases of beer, meet up, plug in, and get to recording. Nothing fancy here, folks.

I've used the phrase "nothing fancy" a couple times over the course of this review because "Dark Thrones and Black Flags" isn't anything fancy. It's Darkthrone. It's ugly. It's rough. It's dirty. And I wouldn't have it any other way.

If you like the direction Fenriz and Nocturno Culto have taken since "Hate Them", by all means, check this out. If you're one of those that don't like anything they've recorded since "Panzerfaust", maybe your time would be better spent raiding your mom's make-up cabinet and posing in your back yard at night with whatever implements of landscaping you have handy.

Stand out tracks: "The Winds…", "Oath Minus", "Norway in September", and "Witch Ghetto"


Rating breakdown
Performance: 9
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 8
Production: 8


 



Written on 30.10.2008 by BitterCOld has been officially reviewing albums for MetalStorm since 2009.


Comments

Comments: 78   Visited by: 440 users
31.10.2008 - 09:18
Turin Turambar
Mormegil
Yhm, for me this album deserve maybe for 8, but I prefer old stuff like "Under A Funeral Moon" or "Transilvanian Hunger". This album for me, it's a worse copy of F.O.A.D., more slower, less agresive ( if this possible ). But it's still Darkthrone, so value to have this album.

And fact, "Norway in September" kick ass.
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RYN2a81u8rE
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"There Is No Beast Without Cruelty"
F.Nietzsche
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31.10.2008 - 11:10
FOOCK Nam
This band never make me dissappointed for their stuff. I gotta get this one. Their song titles really are captivating
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31.10.2008 - 11:41
Damnated
Churchburner
This indeed turned out to be a good album. strange that i was never a fan of their black metal stuff but i like this new sound. i should re-listen to their newer albums tbh.
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Blessed is he that murders Christ in himself and in his fellow men.



Written by TheBigRossowski on 10.02.2009 at 16:01

if my wife and I can't conceive, I want a medical shipment of your sperm so our baby will be just like you.
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31.10.2008 - 14:38
Mr. Doctor
Skandino
Sounds really good. If FOAD was already good and you said this one is better... I gotta buy this one too.
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Written by BloodTears on 19.08.2011 at 18:29
Like you could kiss my ass
Written by Milena on 20.06.2012 at 10:49
Rod, let me love you.
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31.10.2008 - 15:02
Arcesse Eum
These guys are washed up... they need to put down the weed and rethink their careers - its never too late. Ihsahn is still making a fool of himself out there too, I dont know whats wrong with just taking it easy.
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As above, so below.
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31.10.2008 - 16:03
enumaelis
I didnt like too much old Darkthrone, but this punk metal they are doing now... :S much less.
Shouldnt they change their shirts to "True norwegian punk" instead of "black metal"?:-X:lol:
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http://enumaelis.blogspot.com/
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31.10.2008 - 23:23
Southern Wind
Account deleted
Another awesome album by Darkthrone... I think I'll never get tired of their newer sound
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31.10.2008 - 23:41
Uirapuru
Liver Failure
'im not a huge fan of their new sound.. but its Darkthrone after all, its always worth a listen, the review makes it even more promising.
Very cool cover also.
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member of the true crusade against old school heavy metal, early 80s thrash, NWOBHM, traditional doom, first and second wave black metal, old school death metal, US power metal, 70s prog rock and atmospheric doomsludgestoner. o/
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01.11.2008 - 02:02
laucian
Faaaar from what i was expecting..terrible sound, no atmosphere at all, cliche riffs, nothing creative..
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01.11.2008 - 02:11
Doc Godin
Obnoxious
I really like the direction they've been taking recently, I liked what I heard on FOAD, so it sounds like I'll probably like this.
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"I got a lot of really good ideas, problem is, most of them suck."
- George Carlin
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01.11.2008 - 11:02
Big_Evil
Account deleted
HIKING METAL PUNKS!!

Good album, not a huge fan of their, well, Trans. Hunger stuff. And people, don't give me that 'tr00 kvlt' BM shit, lol. Good review man.
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02.11.2008 - 16:52
Finsterwuerden
Sounds like a record from a schoolband, wich want to sound metallike to me. No atmosphere....
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03.11.2008 - 01:38
John Barleycorn
Minimalist
I almost worship Darkthrone's attitude and this album is also quite cool musically. I still like "The Cult is Alive" more with its overwhelming punk influence. The new album is too metal
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03.11.2008 - 05:31
I, braineater
Written by John Barleycorn on 03.11.2008 at 01:38

The new album is too metal


LOL

I think if you liked Sardonic Wrath and The Cult is Alive, but thought F.O.A.D was a bit off, you'll definitely enjoy this one. I liked F.O.A.D, but it was pretty hit and miss, and apart from a few songs, I don't really listen to it much these days - unless I'm drunk and want a Fenriz sing a long..

DTABF has great riffs as expected, and does resemble the two albums before F.O.A.D but with a slightly more serious tone than that record (though not overly - it is still Darkthrone after all). Granted you can hear the influence of last year's effort on this too. Quite a few tracks stand out, but 'Norway in September' is a new instant classic for the lads imo. Belting pace throughout too, only the instrumental title track seems a bit like filler - the rest is pretty killer. I'd give it a strong 8.
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"He who makes a beast of himself gets rid of the pain of being a man"
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03.11.2008 - 12:47
Judas
Resident Quack
I loved the last two releases, so looks like I'd best go pick this one up too.
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"Once the game is over, the king and the pawn both go back into the same box."
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07.11.2008 - 22:39
amarchand
Hahaha love the last paragraph, very good review my friend, obviously this album isn't monumental but it doesn't have to be, that's what the darkthrone classics like TH, UAFM, ABITNS, etc are for
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08.11.2008 - 03:24
Dangerboner
:D
Has anyone mastered the art of taking the fucking booklet out of the case yet? I'm talking about the specific jewel case on FOAD and DTaBF.
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08.11.2008 - 03:33
Doc Godin
Obnoxious
Written by Dangerboner on 08.11.2008 at 03:24

Has anyone mastered the art of taking the fucking booklet out of the case yet? I'm talking about the specific jewel case on FOAD and DTaBF.

You mean those weird ass jewel box cases with the rounded edges? and you have to push the one edge thinger for it to pop open? Those cases having been popping up all over lately, I'm quite fond of them. I usually just use my thumb to push inwards (towards the hinge) and it pops out from underneath the first set of tabs, then just pull it out....damn that sentence made no sense.
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"I got a lot of really good ideas, problem is, most of them suck."
- George Carlin
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26.12.2008 - 20:27
PazuzuSKOM
Pazuzu
Its really very nice album ....and hope make its way through the MS awards...and at least take a POSITION better than Satyr. TAON
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27.12.2008 - 07:20
Dark Seraphim
Great album, really enjoyed it. On first listen every song sounded good. I love the chorus on "The Winds They Called The Dungeon Shacker" I think that Darkthrone have their tongue firmly rammed into their cheeks now but still sound good. A solid 8
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26.02.2009 - 12:06
Himann
Orm KrigGud
Bah, its alright. Certainly not up to the level their older albums were but it had its moments.
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To be Draped by the Shadow of your Morbid Palace. Ohh, Hate Living...The only heat is warm blood

So Pure... So Cold
Transilvanian Hunger
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10.04.2009 - 11:31
Slayer666


Quote:

If you like the direction Fenriz and Nocturno Culto have taken since "Hate Them", by all means, check this out. If you're one of those that don't like anything they've recorded since "Panzerfaust", maybe your time would be better spent raiding your mom's make-up cabinet and posing in your back yard at night with whatever implements of landscaping you have handy.


Or, you could do that, and get this album of Metal Storm because it's clearly not Metal. It's freakin'' crust punk with a very, very, very few miserable BM influences.
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10.04.2009 - 18:32
Mr. Doctor
Skandino
Written by Slayer666 on 10.04.2009 at 11:31

Or, you could do that, and get this album of Metal Storm because it's clearly not Metal. It's freakin'' crust punk with a very, very, very few miserable BM influences.




I'm sorry, but I don't really see the point of your comment. We all know what kind of music Darkthrone is playing. And also there are many people who see this album and the previous ones metal enough.
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Written by BloodTears on 19.08.2011 at 18:29
Like you could kiss my ass
Written by Milena on 20.06.2012 at 10:49
Rod, let me love you.
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10.04.2009 - 19:17
BitterCOld
Gringo
Written by Slayer666 on 10.04.2009 at 11:31



Quote:

If you like the direction Fenriz and Nocturno Culto have taken since "Hate Them", by all means, check this out. If you're one of those that don't like anything they've recorded since "Panzerfaust", maybe your time would be better spent raiding your mom's make-up cabinet and posing in your back yard at night with whatever implements of landscaping you have handy.


Or, you could do that, and get this album of Metal Storm because it's clearly not Metal. It's freakin'' crust punk with a very, very, very few miserable BM influences.


and I will challenge you the same way I challenged the other poster that claimed that "Death Magnetic" is not metal...

explain to me how it is not metal.

list for me critical elements of what metal is, and list for me how this album deviates from those standards.
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get the fuck off my lawn.
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23.04.2009 - 20:40
Slayer666
Written by BitterCOld on 10.04.2009 at 19:17

Written by Slayer666 on 10.04.2009 at 11:31



Quote:

If you like the direction Fenriz and Nocturno Culto have taken since "Hate Them", by all means, check this out. If you're one of those that don't like anything they've recorded since "Panzerfaust", maybe your time would be better spent raiding your mom's make-up cabinet and posing in your back yard at night with whatever implements of landscaping you have handy.


Or, you could do that, and get this album of Metal Storm because it's clearly not Metal. It's freakin'' crust punk with a very, very, very few miserable BM influences.


and I will challenge you the same way I challenged the other poster that claimed that "Death Magnetic" is not metal...

explain to me how it is not metal.

list for me critical elements of what metal is, and list for me how this album deviates from those standards.

Uhm, OK. That's easy. Check out the way the guitar is used. Nothing compared to old Darkthrone. Tehniques are those that are used primarily in punk. Check the drums. The most classic punk beat. No atmosphere, no in-depthness, just pure mindless punky guitar slashing that my freind who bought his guitar a week ago could play perfectly. And my 7 year-old cousin could easely do the drumms. And the vocals.... oh, the vocals. The guy is shouting like a maniac, with absolutely no thought about how it fits with the rest of the music. Compare it to The Misfits. Sure, DTaBF is rawer, dirtier, but that's about it.
Oh, and the lyrics..... Childish, idiotic, completely parodic... If I didn't know better, I would have thought that the entire album is a parody to BM. And yet, it got elected as THE BEST BM album of 2009. I for one, took that almost personaly.

Fenriz, Occulto get off whatever you're on, and record another Transilvanian Hunger! Now!
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23.04.2009 - 21:47
Mr. Doctor
Skandino
Written by Slayer666 on 23.04.2009 at 20:40

Oh, and the lyrics..... Childish, idiotic, completely parodic... If I didn't know better, I would have thought that the entire album is a parody to BM.


There are ten as much of shitty lyrics than good lyrics in BM...
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Written by BloodTears on 19.08.2011 at 18:29
Like you could kiss my ass
Written by Milena on 20.06.2012 at 10:49
Rod, let me love you.
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24.04.2009 - 07:24
BitterCOld
Gringo
Complexity is not necessarily a trademark of Punk vs. Metal as well.

they have stated repeatedly in interviews how they went "primitive" following "Soulside Journey" ... the title track to "Transilvanian Hunger" is hardly complex or difficult. if your "friend with a guitar for a week" hasn't figured it out yet, perhaps he should trade in his guitar for guitar hero...

the fact is black metal is partially an offshoot of punk. Quorthon was pretty clear in describing how Charged G.B.H's "City Baby Attacked By Rats" was a huge influence on the first Bathory records. (Grindcore is another offshoot of punk, fwiw)

this album is an amalgamation of punk, old school metal, and black metal.

perhaps YOU hear punk in the riffs because of your background, but as someone who has listened to punk rock since a full 8-10 years before you were even born, i hear more metal in those riffs than the simple power chord bashing of old GBH, Exploited, Misfits, et all. - while there are plenty of power chords being bashed in "DTaBF", there are plenty of tremolo-picked single note runs, and those - coupled with string bends - are more out of Celtic Frost's playbook.

your last statement was your most telling. "TH2" ain't happening. boo hoo for you.
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get the fuck off my lawn.
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24.04.2009 - 11:36
Slayer666
Written by Mr. Doctor on 23.04.2009 at 21:47

Written by Slayer666 on 23.04.2009 at 20:40

Oh, and the lyrics..... Childish, idiotic, completely parodic... If I didn't know better, I would have thought that the entire album is a parody to BM.


There are ten as much of shitty lyrics than good lyrics in BM...

True, but these lyrics are MORONIC, not shity. There is a difference. You might call some lyrics "shity", but that would also apply to some cheesy, not-too-inteligent ones. OK, so they are not exactly top-notch, but they, unlike these lyrics, don't make fun of the music they stand for, and are not suited for 10 year old kids. I mean, Whitch Ghetto? Hikin Metal Punx? Hanging Out In Haiger? What is this? Names of South Park episodes?
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24.04.2009 - 15:26
Mr. Doctor
Skandino
Written by Slayer666 on 24.04.2009 at 11:36

What is this? Names of South Park episodes?


Nope, sense of humor that is...

If you're a dude who finds his music way too serious... Then there's no meaning of giving a fuck for Darkthrone since they play music not for serious guys but for the ones that truly enjoy music just for fun.

You said "make fun of the music they stand for"... I've read the lyrics. And I don't see jokes about metal but about posers. I do see some funny coments about Black Metal, but then again... They don't play BM as you said it. So that means the coment I just quoted is totally useless.
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Written by BloodTears on 19.08.2011 at 18:29
Like you could kiss my ass
Written by Milena on 20.06.2012 at 10:49
Rod, let me love you.
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24.04.2009 - 16:56
Slayer666
Written by Mr. Doctor on 24.04.2009 at 15:26

Written by Slayer666 on 24.04.2009 at 11:36

What is this? Names of South Park episodes?


Nope, sense of humor that is...

If you're a dude who finds his music way too serious... Then there's no meaning of giving a fuck for Darkthrone since they play music not for serious guys but for the ones that truly enjoy music just for fun.

You said "make fun of the music they stand for"... I've read the lyrics. And I don't see jokes about metal but about posers. I do see some funny coments about Black Metal, but then again... They don't play BM as you said it. So that means the coment I just quoted is totally useless.

You're wrong. There IS a meaning of giving a fuck for Darkthrone, seeing how they used to make amaizing "serious music". I've been through a whooole lot of BM albums, and none of them create the atmosphere Transilvanian Hunger does. I mean, they went from TH to this.... "album". I find absolutely nothing even vaguely enjoyable about it.
This comment is useless? What a stupid thing to say. Aren't all comments on this site useless? Are they going to change anything? No, I don't think so. Comments are just posted so other people know what you think about the subject. How can an opinion of a person you don't even know be "usefull"? You have the damn review, that's all the usefull information there is.
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