Reviews Ragnarok Malediction

Ragnarok

Malediction

Norway's Ragnarok have made their name playing traditional Black Metal for nearly 2 decades now. On this, their 7th, full length they remain steadfast in style and attitude. Much can be said for consistency especially when it comes to genre whose fans can be as fickle as Black Metal. 

The record itself starts with a cold atmospheric piece before breaking into what the band do best vile grunting vocals sharing space with blast beats and tremolo picking. the band tear through the remainder of the song with no shortage of rage. By the time it takes a few breaks to slow the tempo and build up it manages to sound heavier than before. This basic formula could apply to the rest of the album really. This is not necessarily a bad thing as Ragnarok as a band take advantage of knowing what they want to play and how to do it well. They waste nary a thought towards changing things up.

While there is nothing wrong with clean production i find it doesn't fully benefit this style of metal. For my dollar there is something special about feeling as though you have to take the cd or record out and blow off an extra layer of dirt that has been stained on there forever. For this record the production is quite clear allowing for the leads to shine through and each drum blast to really stick out. Meanwhile even with this said the bass rarely makes more than a prefunctary appearance within the mix.

Simply put there is nothing wrong with this record at all it is an above average traditional black metal record. there are no eyes set towards another genre or making a new one at all. The band remain doing what they have always been doing with alarming consistency. There is nothing wrong with a band playing to their strengths or even being comfortable with idiosincracies. This is something to truly enjoy for any fan of traditional black metal.

7.5 / 10Jon E.
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Tor Johnson Records
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