Bathory
The Return of the Darkness and Evil


5.0
classic

Review

by Ain Soph Aur CONTRIBUTOR (37 Reviews)
September 22nd, 2015 | 73 replies


Release Date: 1985 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The quintessence of darkness and evil.

The history of black metal is a dense and convoluted one. Over the initial ten years of the genre’s existence, black metal was defined by the insatiable search for extremity, encompassing all of metal’s darkest qualities and truly being the largest amalgam of the style. Where other genres were setting styles in stone, black metal hungered and enveloped more and more styles to become its own. Taking its fire from all the reaches of death metal, heavy metal, speed metal, thrash metal, doom metal and punk, black metal undoubtedly lived up to its name, both with the complete absorption of the spectrum as well as the complete absence of light.

Bathory became the ultimate embodiment of what black metal was and could be in 1985 with The Return of the Darkness and Evil, encompassing all its forms and experiments up until that point in time. With the opening ambiance of ‘Revelation of Doom’, something stirs deep within the darkness. Wailing, thunderous guitars rise slowly and tattered moans fill the gaps. There’s a precedent being set here, an atmosphere that remains unrivalled in pure evil power. This is the experimentation of black metal realised in its ability to be present just in the aesthetics of miasmic feedback.

Throughout the album, noisy, fragmented solos rip haphazardly, almost like they were improvised tangles of dissonance that would make Trey Azagthoth blush. The drums pound away almost completely against the rhythm of the guitars, speeding up and slowing down with bass drum kicks waxing and waning in impossible to replicate beats. Quorthon slurs satanic passages in a drunken stupor. At the time there was nothing quite like it, and there has still yet to be any album that can match the style, furiosity, and atmosphere of The Return…….

As black metal progressed over time, this album stood as the blueprint for what would become the second wave, as bands like Darkthrone and Burzum took many cues from Quorthon’s unique vision of speed, atmosphere and fun. Despite the light-heartedness of the makers, there’s a heavy weight of spirituality that waits for those who wish to find it. The dynamic of the head-smashing riffs contrasts the deep kinship the listener can find with such a barbaric record. The Return…… transcends beyond the drunken search for speed and extremity and remains, to this day, the perfect expression of black metal.



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user ratings (434)
Chart.
3.8
excellent
other reviews of this album
SickSickSix (3.5)
Bathory Returns with the most evil album of all time...


Comments:Add a Comment 
emester
September 22nd 2015


8176 Comments


Heard this for the first time a couple of days ago.

Actually some really good stuff. Still prefer Under the Sign and BFD but I think this beats out Hammerheart and the S/T for me.

Review could talk about the album a bit more in depth but your writing style as always is splendid.

Pos'd btw :]

Digging: Spectral Voice - Eroded Corridors of Unbeing

zaruyache
September 22nd 2015


17744 Comments


Don't think you can trick me into listening to Bathory just by writing about them. I see through your forest elf sneakiness.

Gameofmetal
Staff Reviewer
September 22nd 2015


10155 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

zaru ur killin me



album rules

adr
September 22nd 2015


11709 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

zaru that's embarrassing tbh

Gameofmetal
Staff Reviewer
September 22nd 2015


10155 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

think this is a good day to jam this

zaruyache
September 22nd 2015


17744 Comments


because they're just too trve for ya.


Ulver Bergtatt - Et eeventyr i 5 capitler
2.5
09.22.15


ORLY?

Ovrot
September 22nd 2015


13066 Comments


sweet album
Blood Fire Death is my fav

Ovrot
September 22nd 2015


13066 Comments


you take that back bergtatt is a goddamn masterpiece

zaruyache
September 22nd 2015


17744 Comments


ya thats how a poseur would justify their untrvthfulness

InFlamesWeThrash666
September 22nd 2015


6865 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

trve albvm

Digging: Darkthrone - Circle the Wagons

TheSonomaDude
September 22nd 2015


5462 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

UTSOTBM is my fave Bathory but...



THIS IS THE RETURN OF THE DARKNESS AND EVIL [2]

BandNewbac
September 22nd 2015


2351 Comments


amazing review, and yeah i'm pretty tempted to 5 this

TheCrocodile
September 22nd 2015


2821 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Will relisten, might bump cause pussy rating ik

BandNewbac
September 22nd 2015


2351 Comments


this is easily top 3 bathory tbh

enedwaith
September 22nd 2015


1865 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

love this album but giving it a 5 is weird. it's a pretty bad album

evilford
September 22nd 2015


40532 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I am so confused right now

evilford
September 22nd 2015


40532 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

trying to count how many times you contradicted yourself there

enedwaith
September 22nd 2015


1865 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

well you can love something but still recognize it being amateur and inelegant and undeserving of a perfect rating, when there are other albums that you love + see as masterfully crafted and elegant and stuff



which is my opinion toward the return









enedwaith
September 22nd 2015


1865 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

you're misunderstanding elegance. elegance is measuring the precision in articulation. the return... of darkness and evil is jumbled mess, which is why i used inelegant to describe it. apocalyptic raids is a dirty dirty album, but so cohesive in its style and direction and flow i'd definitely call it elegant.



apocalyptic raids is a magical album for me. the return... is just entertaining

evilford
September 22nd 2015


40532 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I like the beeps



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