Naglfar aren’t well known for reinventing themselves, so it comes as no surprise that their 4th album “Pariah” sits comfortably in the realm of what we’ve already come to expect by them. If you’re at all familiar with the band, you can probably stop reading here, because there’s no surprises in store for you.
And while “generic” may be a harsh word to use for a band as talented as Naglfar, they’re certainly not doing a lot to dispel that idea. Their previous album “Sheol” was perhaps the sign of things to come – that the band has become quite comfortable writing heavily melodic, aggressive black/death metal, in much the same vein as Dissection/early Sacramentum. It’s not original, but they do it well, and I always get a good lift listening to them because of their overblown aggressive lyrics and fun melodies. There’s certainly nothing wrong with it by any means, it just wears down rather quickly, and if you’ve heard one album you might as well have heard them all, for all I care.
One of the real noticeable downers of this album is the change of vocalist. I was always quite at home with the high, dry screams of former vocalist Jens Rydén, but now that he’s left the band to focus on his studies, bassist Kristoffer Olivius has taken over, and his voice doesn’t have as much character. That said though, the difference isn’t all that noticeable.
Basically, it’s an album worth hearing if you haven’t heard the band before, and most definitely a good stepping stone into the genre of black metal if you’re not awfully familiar with it. The melodies are catchy and the songs are well written. But if you already own one of their albums and find yourself coming back to it only every several months, this won’t pull any new punches.
2. A Swarm Of Plagues
3. Spoken Words Of Venom
4. The Murder Manifesto
5. Revelations Carved In Flesh
6. None Shall Be Spared
7. And The World Shall Be Your Grave
8. The Perpetual Horrors
9. Carnal Scorn & Spiritual Malice