Tuesday 9 June 2015

Morgoth - 'Ungod' (Album Review)

Album Type: Full-Length
Date Released: 30/3/2015
Label: Century Media Records

‘Ungod’ CD//DD//LP track listing:

1. House Of Blood
2. Voice Of Slumber
3. Snakestate
4. Black Enemy
5. Descent Into Hell
6. Ungod
7. Nemesis
8. God Is Evil
9. Traitor
10. Prison In Flesh
11. The Dark Sleep
Morgoth is

Karsten "Jagger" Jäger | Vocals
Harry Busse | Lead & Rhythm Guitars
Sebastian Swart | Rhythm Guitars
Sotirios Kelekidis | Bass
Marc Reign | Drums


Morgoth return with Karsten Jäger on vocals after the departure of Marc Grewe. The German death metallers still deal with resolutely old school styled filth. Think Autopsy or Obituary by way of Europe and you've got it. From 1985 to the late 90's and then on to a recent reformation, Morgoth have kept ploughing this singular furrow and have the style down pat. It is dark, nasty and with a bleak atmosphere.

Opener “House of Blood” is memorable and vicious and this sets the tone for the rest of the album.  There are no tech fuelled workouts or hyper fast blasting- just lead melodies here and there combined with chugging machine gun like riffs. The production is reassuringly meaty with an excellent bass tone. The likes of “Snakestate” and “Black Enemy” are just as feral and continue the rolling weightiness. The album is of uniformly high quality, so picking stand outs is difficult; the band play what they play, they know how to do it and they deliver the goods on every track. That said, the title track is a particularly nasty instrumental with creepy atmospherics. Fantastic.

The drums of Marc Reign are uniformly excellent (lovely ride work and touches of light and shade) and the rest of the band deliver their unique sound with deftness. Those younger listeners who are used to hyper speed may be somewhat bemused by the band's approach- mostly a notch or two down from thrash and perhaps on a speed level with Motorhead in places and Obituary in others- but for me it marks the band out as having their own approach and sound. It is certainly no less heavy- indeed, the likes of “God is Evil” carries a weight and bleakness that more recently formed bands cannot match.

The albums final three tracks deliver on exactly the same level- Euro death with doom elements, played at varying tempos from slow to moderately quick (“Prison in Flesh” is pretty pacy in places). All in all, this is an excellent death metal release from a band that has always been an underground presence. Excellent stuff that combines a lot of what is good in the genre, while leaving out the more tedious elements. Recommended.

Words by: Richard Maw

‘Ungod’ is available now

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