It’s great to have some new material from Craven Idol. 2013’s Towards Eschaton and 2017’s The Shackles of Mammon were both records that I hugely enjoyed, and the 41 minutes of new material on Forked Tongues continues this trend nicely.
Craven Idol combine first and second wave black metal elements with a hearty thrash influence. It’s an old-school sound that still works because it’s a timeless one. Having said that, Craven Idol have their own sound within this, one that’s an extreme metal hybrid and infused with their own ample personality. The band’s latest album combines the blistering speed and focused intent of their debut album with the wider range of tips, traicks, and tools that were demonstrated so effectively on their second record. On Forked Tongues the emphasis is very much on breakneck speed for much of the time, with the first wave influences taking a step back in favour of more vicious, faster ones. It’s a potent formula, and Forked Tongues is a very satisfying and enjoyable experience.
As the album progresses it becomes more adventurous and bold, albeit within the band’s chosen hybrid extreme metal approach. Using blistering speed as a base ingredient, Craven Idol build ever-greater worlds with the album’s component parts and forge their own path in the extreme metal wilderness with ease. As such, when you listen to Forked Tongues it very much feels like the band are taking you on a journey into their own textured world. It’s fast and merciless, but it’s also rich with nuance and songwriting skill.
All of the instruments are clear and sharp, rendered viciously by the expressive production with care and skill. I particularly like the feel of the drums and the fact the the often invisible bass is audible and well-played. The guitars are always a highlight with Craven Idol too, one among many. The band have a talent for blurring the lines between black and thrash metal, but not in the usual tired blackthrash ways. The band do very well to take strengths from both to fashion riffs and melodies that absolutely slay.
Three albums into their existence, and Craven Idol have rewarded my faith in them by producing their most violently effective record to date.
Don’t miss this.