Behemoth - Pandemonic Incantations - 1998 RSD Black Death Metal Gold Vinyl LP

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Behemoth - Pandemonic Incantations

Label: Metal Mind Records
Cat#: MMP LP 0064 GD
Format: Vinyl, LP, Album, Limited Edition, Gold
Country: Poland
Limited edition of 1000 copies on Gold vinyl - Black Friday Record Store Day 2015 exclusive
Originally Released: 1998
Released: 2015
Genre: Rock
Style: Black Metal, Death Metal


A1 Diableria (The Great Introduction)
A2 The Thousend Plagues I Witness
A3 Satan's Sword (I Have Become)
A4 In Thy Pandemaeternum
A5 Driven By The Five-Winged Star

B1 The Past Is Like A Funeral
B2 The Entrance To The Spheres Of Mars
B3 With Spell Of Inferno (Mefisto)
B4 Chwala Mordercom Wojciecha (997-1997 Dzieflec Wieków Hanby)

Furthering their progression from black metal into death metal, Behemoth�s most underrated release Pandemonic Incantations was certainly that delved into the world of both genres while experimenting with elements that Behemoth would later master. Riffs are suddenly much heavier. Lead guitar is much more prominent. Nergal�s voice is more of a deep shout instead of a high raspy scream, and the band�s themes seem to have taken an eastern approach rather than Slavic cultures. The chants and eastern approach of Diableria are a fitting introduction for a new beginning for the band. It was in this album that Behemoth began to truly take shape into the unique and original band they are now.

Behemoth truly live up to their name. Throughout the years they have been consistently releasing albums under the guidance of Nergal without ever giving into trends and buckling under their own popularity. Of course many of you know that they have progressed from a raw black metal metal band to a pagan metal outfit to eventually arrive at their current spot i.e. Thelema inspired death metal with obvious Morbid Angel influences.

Pandemonic Incantaions marks their step away from the black/pagan scene into the death metal battlegrounds. They do not entirely forsake their roots on this record yet. The familiar sound of old is still present as are the black metal themed lyrics and song titles. Slowly but surely, though this record unveils what is to come in future (now already past) years and Behemoth's transition into one of the most formidable forces on the metal scene today.

The record opens up with an amazing intro. I am not much of a fan of long intros in general, unless it's an epic/pagan release where the intro plays an integral part of the record, this one however sets a chaotic and dark atmosphere which really draws you into the record without ever becoming boring. Almost seamlessly the intro flows in the opening track ` The Thousand Plagues I Witness'.

After you have picked yourself up from the floor after receiving a sledgehammer spot on in the centre of your face, you should start enjoying the brutal, aggressive and at the same time intricate and highly technical compositions of the band. What this record lacks compared to the later releases like Zos Kia Cvltvs in terms of technical proficiency it more than makes up for in the brutality department.

Since I am a bit of a sucker for good production I must gladly state that this record is surprisingly crisp and sharply produced, especially if you consider that Behemoth were not quite as `big' six years ago. The sharp production manages to project the musical ideas of Nergal and co. much clearer than on some of their earlier, somewhat muddy records. The songs also seem more focused and less chaotic than previously. Whereas before they often tried to squeeze a little bit to much into one song in terms of riffs and compositions they now limit themselves to the central idea and work around it without straying to far. This provides for significantly more coherence and `recognition' to the songs.

As I have said before they have not entirely abandoned their black metal roots and this (at least thematically) culminates in the final track (excluding live bonus tracks) `Chwala Mordercom Wojciecha'. St.Wojciech was the first Christian Bishop in Poland who was murdered by the followers of ancient Slavic faiths. The song obviously pays homage to his murderers. It is the highlight of the album just as the other Polish song `Lasy Pomorza' is the highlight of their earlier release `Grom'.

All in all this a great record, which should appeal to both the fans of Behemoth's early work as well as their later more death metal oriented output.

More Information
Condition New
Format LP
Label Metal Mind Productions