Review Summary: Fast and more furious than ever.
Black metal veterans Impaled Nazarene have to date released thirteen studio albums. The Finnish maniacs' fame is probably rooted in their punkish and flippant attitude, since they never took themselves seriously anyway. However, it is important to mention that they have sampled and adopted several styles into their sound, and from this aspect, Eight Headed Serpent
is among their best works... at least in terms of variety.
Interestingly enough, they took a step away from the blackened-thrash style they presented in Vigorous And Liberating Death
seven years ago, and they returned to a very grind-influenced path: a sound more familiar to the likes of Road to the Octagon
. It was quite a twist for me, since personally I thought they should’ve anchored to making more melodic albums, since that approach worked better in their first albums and in Absence of War Does Not Mean Peace
, but their thirteenth assault proved this opinion wrong. How? Well, the album runs at an incredibly high speed and most of the songs barely last longer than two minutes, but they managed to condense their best spices into the mix. As mentioned above, this creation is more of a blackened-grind mixture than it is “pure black metal”, but you can hear some sweet Motörhead worship (like in “The Nonconformists”), second wave assault (“Metastasizing and Changing Threat”), and bits of death metal (“Unholy Necromancy”) during the album. These extra elements helped a lot to ease the flow of the otherwise very punchy album, thus making it far more exciting than some of the predecessors. Despite these extra elements, I can’t say it is easy to digest this monster, since the album’s pace is still very overwhelming. The only time they changed the pace and took it slow is in the album's closing moments, particularly “Foucault Pendulum”, which fell into the complete opposite direction: they went very doomy there, which is one of the highlights of the album.
After seven years of silence, Impaled Nazarene has released yet another beast into this world. The Eight Headed Serpent
is no less crazy than any entry in their back catalogue, and if you’re looking for something extreme, you are in the right place.