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CD review: BEHEMOTH, "Evangelion"

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behemoth_-_evangelionKicking off with a gargled bellow (that sounds like the Polish equivalent of "You wanted the best, you got the best!"), BEHEMOTH return with an undeniably awesome album ov deathly epic proportions. It's a natural move into more technical territory, although NERGAL's maintained the thrash-inspired riffs and the self-aware satanism that made Demigod and The Apostasy a blast to listen to. Rather than deliver their odes to Satan and depravity with the self-seriousness of countless Lords of Chaos throwaways, Behemoth make every second of Evangelion sound like a party. If any death metal band in the world is worthy of saluting Dionysus, it's these guys, who chant their praises over the brain-slaughtering opener "Daimamos."

As much fun as Evangelion is, there's never any question that this is music to take seriously. The effortless-sounding riff of first video "Ov Fire and the Void"is balanced by INFERNO's frantic blast beats, which gives way to the whiplash-inducing "Transmigrating Beyond Realms ov Amenti," a song I'd love to hear live if I weren't worried that the pit would kill me. The mighty, relatively slow guitar progressions of "Alas, the Lord is Upon Me" and "The Seed ov I" hint of GOJIRA, and closing track "Lucifer" justifies its name with a sweeping, brutal melody and wailing leads that distinguish themselves from any of Behemoth's previous creations. Not that they've abandoned black metal, as Evangelion's pereptual extremity attests. It's just that this album is Behemoth's third straight artistic breakthrough.

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Four mutilated bibles out of five

-Ben

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