Samael - Above review




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Band: Samael
Album: Above
Release date: March 2009


01. Under One Flag
02. Virtual War
03. Polygames
04. Earth Country
05. Illumination
06. Black Hole
07. In There
08. Dark Side
09. God's Snake
10. On The Top Of It All


Vorph and Xy are not to be trusted. Samael's latest album Above is one with a history of disinformation, misdirection and outright lies. It all started off as a bloated concept of Gorillaz proportions with a virtual band called "Above" playing songs written for them by the Samael boys. Well, this was a lie. Moving on, Vorph then announced that it would be the missing link between Ceremony Of Opposites and Passage. Again, this was a lie. Finally, the band decided to play one of the new songs on their Winterfest tour and it turned out to sound similar, although a little darker, to Samael's most recent output. Guess what? This was also a lie. If this song does in fact appear on Above, it is completely unrecognizable to me.

This is because Above turned out to be a blindingly fast yet atmospheric black metal album with an industrial edge. Machine gun drums totally dominate this release, drowning behind them every other instrument including the vocals, which are delivered in an ice-cold cybernetic kind of crazy shriek. The bass booms underneath all of this, while the guitars and keyboards play quickly progressing riffs and vague atmospherics in the background, respectively. Unfortunately, all of this is completely unacceptable and totally inappropriate for any fan of the band. For those that enjoy Samael's recent output, this will be far too crazy, dark and fast. For old fans, Above will be too electronic, cleanly produced and fast. What a total misfire of an album this is.

OK, that's enough, now, in the last 4 sentences, I was lying. Above is in actuality a superb album that further cements Samael's position as the key innovators on the scene for the past 2 decades or so. It is completely inconsequential that upon first listen this album will most likely totally shatter your expectations since it will do so with such immense power and consistency that it is unlikely to be a disappointment. In fact, describing separate songs here is utterly pointless, they work well as single entities and even better as an album. This kind of fluid interplay between memorable melodic black metal riffs and blitzkrieg chaingun rhythmic intensity is rarely achieved.

Although they are a bunch of liars, with their latest release Samael proves that it still has what it takes to be the kind of band that convinces impressionable metalheads to come up with silly cosmos-themed Internet forum user names ending with the letters '-ack' or even '-as'...


 



Written on 14.04.2009 by With Metal Storm since 2002, jupitreas has been subjecting the masses to his reviews for quite a while now. He lives in Warsaw, Poland, where he does his best to avoid prosecution for being so cool.


Comments

Comments: 14   Visited by: 297 users
14.04.2009 - 08:18
K†ulu
Seeker of Truth
This is totally confusing: "Awake," "I lied..." and then maybe you lied again, and those who haven't heard the album won't even know what to expect; a bit funny though
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Savor what you feel and what you see
Things that may not seem important now
But may be tomorrow

R.I.P. Chuck Schuldiner

Satan was a Backstreet Boy
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14.04.2009 - 09:23
BitterCOld
Gringo
Jupitreas pulled a Samael and lied about the album name to throw us off the scent.

enjoyable album - best since "Passage" - review took a couple reads to fully process because of all of Jupe's trickery. I approve.
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get the fuck off my lawn.
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14.04.2009 - 10:50
Elio
Red Nightmare
I think jupitreas lied about the value of this album IMO. Not a good album at all.
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IntoPlighT said: "Slipknot is 15 years old how the fuck is that Nu metal?"

BEST. QUOTE. EVER.
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14.04.2009 - 11:24
frankeli
Account deleted
I do agree that the album is not worth listening, but, hey man, jupitreas, calling someone aliar and using very heavy accusations ... that's a bit too much. Do not forget their past. And than again, do you personaly know them to call them with such names??? I don't believe (although I may be mistaken)

Let us all hope that the Samael guys will think before they act.

Thanx
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14.04.2009 - 12:26
jupitreas
hi-fi / lo-life
Sorry about the "awake" thing, it was a Freudian slip considering I was writing that review in the middle of the night. All fixed now.
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14.04.2009 - 13:16
K†ulu
Seeker of Truth
Written by jupitreas on 14.04.2009 at 12:26

Sorry about the "awake" thing, it was a Freudian slip considering I was writing that review in the middle of the night. All fixed now.

Oh, the awake thing was not made on purpose? I thought it was a part of the "lie." Now, it's even funnier.
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Savor what you feel and what you see
Things that may not seem important now
But may be tomorrow

R.I.P. Chuck Schuldiner

Satan was a Backstreet Boy
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14.04.2009 - 13:31
Marcel Hubregtse
Grumpy Old Fuck
By far their best album since Passage.
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Member of the true crusade against European Flower Metal

Yesterday is dead and gone, tomorrow is out of sight
Dawn Crosby (r.i.p.)
05.04.1963 - 15.12.1996

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14.04.2009 - 13:55
Hamird
HIV+
I didn't like the album, because I expected to listened to an Industrial Black Metal music like Aborym do, but as it's written in the review "This is because Above turned out to be a blindingly fast yet atmospheric black metal album with an industrial edge".. Not only it's true about Above, but for their previous album also it's true. Still Solar Soul sounds better than Above in my opinion.
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14.04.2009 - 16:14
Pazuzu88
Pazuzu
Its not bad album...but i guess Solar Soul still more fresh than this one, with more creativity than this one

there will never be such thing as "Ceremony Of Opposites"....
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15.04.2009 - 00:23
muska
"OK, that's enough, now, in the last 4 sentences, I was lying." - actually you were not, it was very close to what i thought of the album, biggest disappointment so far this year, and you should delete the word melodic from your review, cause melody is non existent here. for some bands its good to go back to their roots, but Samael were caught somewhere in the middle of nowhere. nevertheless i'll be looking for them to bounce back with something more original
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01.05.2009 - 22:42
Southern Wind
Account deleted
Written by Marcel Hubregtse on 14.04.2009 at 13:31

By far their best album since Passage.


I agree... I have to say I never expected Samael to release such a good album, as all their last cds were mediocre at best.
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20.06.2009 - 19:03
Uirapuru
Liver Failure
Good album. ''Black hole' is awesome. Even the remix version.
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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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26.06.2009 - 10:16
Koen Smits
I like it better then Solar Soul. It's far more agressive an powerfull. I'll give it an 8 at this moment.
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RIP: Frank Vandenbroucke (6 nov 1974 - 12 oct 2009)

Written by Bad English on 05.04.2014 at 15:05

but spoil thius film is like spoil porn and say porn ends whit cum shot ...
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25.09.2009 - 19:43
Dominus
The Shooter
Solar Soul is much better.
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