Review Summary: A harmless and average album by Cradle of Filth.
Since I was a young impressionable teenager, desperately seeking comfort in more extreme genres of music, I’ve always had a bit of a guilty pleasure for ‘Cradle of Filth’. Although I didn’t particularly like Thornography (on any level whatsoever), I haven’t had much squabble with any of their other albums.
It’s rather difficult to throw figurative stones at this album, as other people have done, because I really don’t think the music was all that bad- it has quite a few solid (and catchy) tracks in it, so it would be reasonable for me to assume that this is a fairly underrated release.
If I had to criticise a few things, however, it would be that the keyboards sound quite dull, and doesn’t exactly give the songs the magnificence of some other albums they have released. As a result of this, ‘Bitter Suits to Succubi’ doesn’t particularly grip me from the first listen. Moreover, all of the songs (barring the instrumentals) are at least 4:40 long, which may make them slightly tedious to some.
Arguably, this album is a little more mainstream than their others, with the likes of ‘Born in a Burial Gown’ and ‘Scorched Earth Erotica’ being surprisingly pleasant, even to those not accustomed to Dani “The Midget” Filth’s helium-like howling.
I also noticed that they’ve rerecorded a few of the classic tracks from their first album- notably, the songs "The Principle of Evil Made Flesh", "The Black Goddess Rises" and "Summer Dying Fast”. Though some may call this a lack of inspiration for them to fall back on some of their earlier material, I personally have no real problem with this, because I think the production on this album helped to inject some new found life into the older songs.
I was also surprised to see Cradle of Filth pull off a half-decent cover; that being ‘No Time to Cry’ (the original by Sisters of Mercy). In my opinion, COF’s version simply blows SoM’s out of the water.
It’s difficult to judge whether this album would appeal to the more die-hard COF fans, or the more casual listeners, but I definitely think there are some tracks worth checking out. All in all, not the most inspiring album they’ve done- though quite tame and harmless by their standards, it’s not exactly a load of rubbish either.
As a Cradle of Filth album in isolation, this isn’t really that bad- but compared to some older classics, such as ‘Vempire’ or ‘Dusk and Her Embrace’, it isn’t groundbreaking by any stretch of the imagination. Couple that with the fact that nearly half of this album feature remakes of pre-existing songs, at times you may feel like you haven’t really got your value for money.
Nonetheless, an enjoyable and undisruptive listen from start to finish.
- Born in a Burial Gown
- Suicide and Other Comforts
- Scorched Earth Erotica
- Dinner at Deviant’s Palace
- Listening to this album as your first experience with COF.
Final Rating: 3.5/5