Belphegor – The Devils (Review)

Belphegor - The DevilsBelphegor are an Austrian black/death metal band and this is their twelfth album.

Influenced by the 90s era of both black and death metal, The Devils contains 36 minutes of unholy new material, (or 42 if you include the bonus track, which is a rerecorded medley of two older songs).

Belphegor combine a ferocious assault on the senses with dark malefic moods and epic Satanic grandeur. The black metal side of the band is strong, making for a very blackened interpretation of the black/death style.

The Devils is a rich and well-crafted slab of blackened extremity, layered with a variety of ideas and sounds that bolster and enhance the core of Belphegor’s sound. Sinister atmospheres and malevolent melodies swirl around like wreaths of smoke, sometimes enriching the aggressive brutality, while at others coming to the fore and dominating proceedings. Chants and choirs support the primary growls and screams, further adding to the overall quality of the songs.

Drop into the album at any random point and you could be listening to anything from raging blast beats to immersive layered soundscapes to grim blackened intensity to majestic darkness. Yes, the songs demonstrate a good mix of different paces, feelings, and content, all of it dark and evil, to varying extents. Some of the blackened melodies are worth the price of admission alone.

Sharp musicianship is on display constantly, and the recording is clear and suitably massive. Everything about the way The Devils sounds is well-judged and professional.

Well-written, with a combination brute force simplicity and nuanced intricacy, The Devils is a very enjoyable record. Belphegor have produced a top quality album here.

Highly recommended.

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