Review Summary: Painfully average black metal, sounds like something Darkthrone left in the cutting room.
What can be said about this album, other than that it represents the mediocrity that has befallen the black metal genre. Ewiges Reich is another one of those bands that aren't bad, but they also bring nothing to the table and just play a 35 minute exercise in standard black metal. Certainly not memorable, worth a listen to once or twice if you're interested in related projects like Myrkwid
, which are far more interesting.
There are two crippling problems with the album, these being the riffing and the production (two things you absolutely can't afford to get wrong when making a black metal record). The production is especially atrocious in regard to the drums. The snare drum sounds extremely weak with no depth to it, and when it is used in blast beats it stands out like a sore thumb. The guitars are pretty much drained of any mid range yet still lack a trebly edge to them giving a dull weak tone to them. Hell the bass cuts through on the recording, which should give you an idea of about how powerful the guitars sound.
The riffs are divided into three categories, power chords, arpeggiation of the power chords, and some tremolo picking. Generally the drums do the exact same thing for every type of riff. Power chords means mid paced rock beat, tremolo picking means blast beats, and arpeggios means drum breaks with occasional crash hit and tom fill. Everything is very predictable, Ewiges Reich just use time tested formulas and stick to them. The result is a record that any listener familiar to early black metal will see as an exercise in redundancy.
Not to knock the record completely because it does have some good aspects to it. The playing is fairly tight and definitely does not sound like a bedroom project by any means. The vocals are also well done, and since there aren't too many extended instrumental sections they do well in adding some energy and life into the 7 songs. It all does remind me too much of something Darkthrone
would have made (as much as I hate to say it because most black metal will share some traits with Darkthrone
at one point in their career). Basic riffing, basic drumming, the same formulas throughout the album and vocals that sound similar to Total Death.
If you like that era of Darkthrone
by all accounts give this album a listen. For the more seasoned black metal fans I'd say pass this one, there's better releases to be found from the bands members. If you're new to black metal this may not be a bad place to start, it is very standard black metal and not too harsh or chaotic.