Review Summary: Such is the bloodlust of these bearded hustlers.
After the release of the outstanding Judeobeast Assassination
and significant line-up changes, chances were that Grand Belial’s Key were going to falter with their long overdue third full length, Kosherat
. This, of course, is forgetting the fundamental aspect which makes Grand Belial’s Key such a fantastic band: they don’t give a fu
ck, and will gladly lower the earth into the fires of hell, leaving us at Satan’s whim. Without a doubt, the difference in the band’s sound and feel is very apparent, most importantly in the vocal department, but fortunately Grand Belial’s Key have not lost their marked character, nor their unique approach to black metal, which ultimately leaves Kosherat
as one fantastic album.
Rather than the ‘in your face’ forceful blasphemy that made up the brunt of Judeobeast Assassination
’s thrust, Kosherat
is somewhat smoother, its melody covered in an even level of fuzz. This results in the album being a little more musically subtle than its predecessor, but the difference in execution does not necessarily mean a lessening in impact. The build-up midway through ‘The Red Heifer’, for example, is just as strong as any guitar line from Judeobeast Assassination
, and its preceding moment of reflection makes it all the more forceful.
Production is again on the grittier side, but this does nothing more than further the band’s atmosphere. The slightly washed out feel is perhaps even more suitable on Kosherat
, given its fuzzy nature. Moreover, coupling the production with the aforementioned ‘smoothening’ of GBK’s sound greatly improves the fluidity of the album, strengthening it as a whole, rather than it having to rely on particular moments of greatness, like Judeobeast Assassination
The biggest change in the band however, is in the vocal section. The addition of vocalist Grimnir, who actually sounds rather similar to ex-vocalist ‘The Black Lourde of Crucifixion’, gives the album its defining character; whereas Gelal Necrosodomy’s guitar riffs characterize Grand Belial’s Key as a whole (as with Arghoslent
), it is the vocal work which then furthers the album’s sound and gives it a personality. Other than the slight nuances in the music, it is largely Grimnir’s vocals which distinguish Kosherat
from Judeobeast Assassination
, giving it a distinct, separate feel. His gutturals and shrieks are very throaty, sometimes a little gurgly and perhaps could be likened to the USBM vocal style, a la Leviathan
, although such a comparison is mostly arbitrary, and Grimnir’s technique doesn’t generally suck.
just may be the last full length album from Grand Belial’s Key – 2008 gave us the excellent three way split between GBK, Absurd
, and that was perhaps the last new material we will see, other than possibly unreleased tracks. With that in mind, Kosherat
has a slightly heightened significance as the closing chapter of the band’s extensive discography. It is perhaps a little harder to delve into this than the band’s so called ‘opus’, Judeobeast Assassination
, as it is not so immediately outstanding, and takes a certain amount of time to unravel and reveal its true nature. Nevertheless, do not fret, as it is just as potent as any of GBK’s work, and is an excellent black metal album. Highly recommended.