Vader - The Ultimate Incantation (1992)
Vader had been around since 1986 but it wasn't until 1992 that they released their first full length album, The Ultimate Incantation
. The album contains all of the song (except the intro, which was not carried across) from their famous demo, Morbid Reich
, which was one of the biggest-selling death/thrash metal demos of all time (over 10,000 copies). The rest of the songs were new songs, written for this album.
One thing about this album that may bring about debate is the vocals of Peter, which are quite difficult to describe. On the first listen they do sound very weak, as though he is holding back a bit with his growling. After alot of listens though, they do grow on you, and although they never were 'bad', they grow on you and become decent. The guitar music is well written and executed. Catchy riffs, although nothing incredibly technical, mixed with a nice tone leaves the listener satisfied with the guitar rhythm section. However, the solos aren't too great; the typical Kerry King-esque whammy bar wankage is in abundance and brings down the songs on a whole. The drumming is excellent as with most death metal releases. Fast in places, although they are hindered by slightly bad production which stops them from penetrating the music quite as well as I would like. Again, like most death metal releases, the bass isn't very promiment, but what can be heard seems to be satisfactory.
This album is more or less just a collection of good songs. There aren't any songs that leave you feeling dissapointed, there aren't any songs that stick out as the masterpiece of the album. That isn't an insult though, the songs are well written and very enjoyable to listen to. 'Vicous Circle' is probably one of my favourite songs on the album, starting out at a quick tempo with a nice riffs left, right and centre. Peter takes his place behind the mic and the song keeps pounding on until it's sudden ending. An excellent song, with a collection of excellent riffs that all flow into each other well.
'The Crucified Ones' ir probably my favourite though, which kicks in fast with some excellent drum-work then calms down a while whilst still maintaning this speed. The chorus is very memorable, and is one of my favourite moments on the album. Another great part of this song is the middle section, which is excellent until the whammy bar soloing kicks in which hinders it a little in my opinion. Again, this song comes to an abrupt ending before the next song, 'Final Massacre' comes in and does the same thing.
All of the songs are great though, I've tried to pick out a couple to give you a little taste of what to expect but the whole album fits more or less the same forumla. Although lacking in diversity a little this is still a great release by Vader. A little primitive in the production perhaps, but the songwriting is good as is the execution of the songs. There are more than enough good riffs to keep you going, and the drums are excellent also.
So overall, I would say despite a few flaws (production, vocals and lack of diversity), this is still an excellent album. Although it is disregarded by alot of Vader fans, I would still rate it as almost as highly as later releases like De Profundis
and Future of the Past
. I would recommend this album to fans of death metal and thrash metal in general, and I would recommend the songs 'Vicious Circle', 'The Crucified Ones', 'Chaos' and 'Breath of Centuries'.