Rating:
6.5
Belphegor - Walpurgis Rites - Hexenwahn
9 October 2009


01. Walpurgis Rites
02. Veneratio Diaboli - I Am Sin
03. Hail The New Flesh
04. Reichswehr In Blood
05. The Crosses Made Of Bone
06. Der Geistertreiber
07. Destroyer Hekate
08. Enthralled Toxic Sabbath
09. Hexenwahn - Totenkult


Belphegor have been around a while and with Walpurgis Rites - Hexenwahn are presenting album number eight. In recent years the band have shown themselves to be a solid black metal act, but not a band to take seriously at all. Who can forget the cover for the Bondage Goat Zombie? The promo video for "Der Geistertreiber" is also equally as silly, and also the worst song on this album.

Walpurgis Rites - Hexenwahn shows that Belphegor are clearly a competent band, but perhaps a band that have run out of ideas. This is black metal, but for considerable chunks it is black metal with no real pace or conviction. The album does have its moments, "Hail The New Flesh" being one of the leanest cuts of the album, but this song is still subject to some quite laughable moments which are actually quite confusing when deciding how to digest the album. Belphegor stretch to the ridiculous at times, but at others the band seem like a seriously punishing black metal machine. The band come across as almost the Dethklok of black metal, while actually being a real band. Belphegor have totally over emphasised being and sounding "evil", and the result is somewhat fake sounding music that gives the impression that this is some kind of joke.

Clowning aside, musically the album is quite good, although completely unoriginal and uninspired. Belphegor certainly give the listener something to headbang along to with their slightly melodic black metal, but Walpurgis Rites - Hexenwahn is definitely not an album that will stick in your head or even be remembered a month down the line.

There are plenty of other great black metal bands out there right now that do this much better than Belphegor. It seems that the band have played up to the clowning, "evil" image to emphasise their music and make people take notice, but have ended up undermining themselves and their genre. If you like the band, Walpurgis Rites - Hexenwahn is worth a listen. If not, stay clear.

-

Black metal
Nuclear Blast
Austria
Length: 39:19

Performance: 8
Songwriting: 6
Originality: 7
Production: 9


Band profile: Belphegor
Album: Walpurgis Rites - Hexenwahn


 



Written on 11.10.2009 by
Baz Anderson
Member of Staff since 2006.
More reviews by Baz Anderson ››



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Biddle127 - 11.10.2009 at 20:26  
I completly agree with you about Der Geistertreiber, I just can't believe they made a video for it too, it was terrible, I actually thought it was fake when I first started watching it.

Oh well I wasn't expecting much from this album, very good review.
Doc Godin - 11.10.2009 at 20:47  
Yeah...sounds like Belphegor. I wish these guys would just take 3 or 4 years off to figure out how to do something new instead of pumping out the same thing this frequently. I used to be a pretty big fan but it's really hard for me to get into them anymore for this reason.
Lord_Regnier - 11.10.2009 at 20:55  
I disagree with the classification. Belphegor is not Black Metal but blackened Death Metal.

BM and blackened Death can be very close and Belphegor definitely has something in common with BM but it sounds more like Death than Black to me. If we had to decide strictly between Black and Death, I would label it as Death.

By the way Baz, you labeled the band as blackened Death Metal on your "Bondage Goat Zombie" review.
And I agree with you that this band is very hard to see otherwise than as a joke.
Derwood - 11.10.2009 at 23:07  
I actually found this album easier to listen to than their past efforts and thought that musically they had matured somewhat this time around, though that still doesn't mean it's good. The rating is bang on as far as I'm concerned, though Lord Regnier has a point about the genre.
Varegan - 11.10.2009 at 23:23  
Another belphegor video!!! i was a big fan of them before i see their videos, I'm not gonna watch this one.
and as far as remember it was blackened kind of death metal not alone bm, i havent listened to this one yet
Got Mayhem? - 12.10.2009 at 03:43  
And to think some consider them more consistant and interesting than Behemoth...I saw part of that video and I couldn't believe it was real.
danielllewis - 12.10.2009 at 04:51  
I don't understand whats up with these guys. They release Goatreich Fleshcult and Pestapokalypse which are A++++ albums, and now this?

This album just feels like I'm listening to bondage goat zombie to be honest.
Jon - 12.10.2009 at 18:37  
Sounds like a case of forgive and forget...by which i mean, forget Belphegor, as there is a perfectly awesome God Dethroned album still in the rotations of those wise enough to buy real Blackened Death Metal...take note!
Konrad - 14.10.2009 at 16:21  
I agree with the review, but the musicianship shown here is definitely better than average. I think if this band keeps releasing albums, they are bound to hit the right spot one day. For now, it's the same as usual from Belphegor. Not a bad listen if you are just looking for something new, but baz is right, it definitely won't stick.

7.5/10
Passe - 20.10.2009 at 02:41  
What a boring album. Belphegor sadly lacks of creativity.
Nergal - 20.10.2009 at 18:48  
I think Walpurgis Rites - Hexenwahn needs more than one listen. I got it today and I'm listening to it right now for the fourth time... Really grows each time you listen to it : the outro of Veneration Diaboli is one of the best things Belphegor have done in their whole career; some passages are very "black" and obscure. A fan of Belphegor (which I am) could appreciate this new opus, the others should give it a try... But I really hope next album will be something different...

8/10
HellHammer - 06.11.2009 at 05:24  
I also think this is not a bad album. Ok I haven't listened to BM (or Blackened Death Metal, whatever they play) in quite a while, so maybe I'm not too critical. And I actually like the song "Der Geistertreiber", it did stick in my head after the first listen.
Sunioj - 06.11.2009 at 08:44  
Yeah, I actually found this to be more memorable than some of their previous stuff. Some of the riffs were really good.
Bloody Rain - 04.01.2010 at 20:14  
This album is pretty mediocre and forgettable imo.
SerratedSyringe - 17.03.2010 at 21:01  
I liked it. There. I said it. I actually like the cheesy super-evil thing they've got going. As for the repetetiveness, maybe, but not forgetable. I give it 8/10.
Passenger - 04.02.2011 at 13:32  
but seriously, "fornicationium et immundus diabolus" is still the greatest blackened death metal song ever
PGON DESTROYTRON - 16.10.2011 at 04:24  
I like this album, and the video for (and the song) Der Geistertreiber. What's wrong with me? There are some intense guitar tones here, like in Hail the New Flesh. Give the brothers a break, they're Austrian

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