Marduk - Dark Endless review
01. Still Fucking Dead (Here's No Peace)
02. The Sun Turns Black As Night
03. Within The Abyss
04. The Funeral Seemed To Be Endless
05. Departure From The Mortals
06. The Black...
07. Dark Endless
08. Holy Inquisition
09. Departure From The Mortals [live] [2006 reissue bonus]
10. Within The Abyss [live] [2006 reissue bonus]
11. Still Fucking Dead [live] [2006 reissue bonus]
12. The Black Goat [live] [2006 reissue bonus]
13. Evil Dead [Death cover] [live] [2006 reissue bonus]
Marduk, Panzer Division Marduk. Sounds familiar? Just as James Bond has his famous phrase, Marduk has its famous album. It is however sad that because of that album a lot of people think that Marduk's music is a chaos of pretty repetitive speed and brutality. Therefore I would like to those people they're wrong and that Marduk can produce a varied album with slower parts and a very strong atmosphere.
This is their first full-length album
Let's start with the album cover. The cover always represents the album for me. The cover of "Dark Endless" fits perfectly the atmosphere. It is not cheesy like some other covers tend to be just because they are made for maximum "evilness". Now you can imagine what Dead meant in "Freezing Moon" while saying "Diabolic shapes float by" (not that there is a connection between the music of these two bands, it is just a thought). I also found a very interesting detail in the lower right corner - a group of figures, I don't know what they're doing but my guess would be a funeral.
Marduk is definitely black metal, but still different from their Norwegian brothers. More precisely they just sound different. What strikes me the most are the "fat" and strong bass lines. I dare say they sound pretty loud in the mix, plus the guitars do not sound blackish, closer to the Swedish death sound I guess. And that's great because they spawn hordes of enjoyable riffs and grooves. Drummer does his job well - from a regular rhythm to blast beats and kick drum work. As for vocals, they are ok, screams mostly, with occasional spices, such as a spoken sentence or a whispered part of a chorus. So the production in general is good, everything sounds as it has to and the sound is clear enough.
The album is consistent and preserves its own vibe throughout the whole length. All tracks are good although some of them standout. For example the title track, "Dark Endless" starts with an amazing and calm guitar introduction. An outstanding spot of this song is where the vocals start and it's remarkable how "symmetric" the guitars and the voice sound at that moment. Another thing I'd like to mention is a hypnotic "oriental" (I don't know if can call it that way) melody in the background towards the end of "Departure From The Mortals". However it's pretty short and disappears as mysteriously as it appeared in the first place.
As the song names such as "The Sun Turns Black As Night", "The Black..." and "Dark Endless" suggest, lyrically this album is all album is about darkness, dark side of human nature. Well nothing really special in this department, they are neither complex nor very deep but again the title track stands out. If I was talking analyzing that song as a poem, I'd say something like "the lyrical subject expresses the misery of his own condition, however there is no sign that he would be willing to change the status quo, thus he is obedient to a spontaneous course of events". To sum up the lyrics suit the music.
Overall this a great album with enough tempo changes, some exquisite melodies and riffs, "fat" bass, neither vocals nor drums become annoying and what is best, it's a grower. Recommended!
|Back in the old days again! 1992 to be precise, Marduk was still a very young band with an unpolished and a little unsuited style. This album shows the band in their "almost" Death Metal side, focused mainly in the creation of riffs and digestible chords, it was the simplistic side of Marduk but still it was an amazing musical experience.
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