Vengeance... Of The Damned (EP)
Watching closely what was brewing in the underground Swedish death metal scene some ten years ago, one could not possibly overlook Bastard Priest and their debut Under The Hammer Of Destruction, that is still regarded by some as one of the best records from that period, together with The Horror, Sleepers In The Rift, From The Womb To The Tomb, Breed Deadness Blood and a few more. Unfortunately, unlike many of their peers who continued to evolve and stretch the genre in various different directions in coming years, they slipped into entropy after releasing their sophomore Ghouls Of The Endless Night, only to finally emerge from obscurity with this EP last month.
The thing that is apparent from the get-go is that Bastard Priest still sounds like Bastard Priest. In their case, that’s a good thing, and not only because they sound the same as they did some ten years ago, but because they sound just as good as they did some ten years ago. The fact the band members are ten years older is scarcely an issue here, as they still manage to come across as hungry youngsters which they certainly aren’t anymore. The music seems to be performed with the same grit and urgency, the songs seem to be written with the same genuine youthful enthusiasm the band had back in the Under The Hammer Of Destruction days. The horse they’re beating is still very much alive.
Speaking of enthusiasm, this EP isn’t some highly contemplative stuff, it has no hidden meanings, no agenda, it’s just there to elevate the mood and make for a better day. Listening to it, you’ll hardly find yourself seeking answers to existential questions, but you certainly won’t find anything to complain about either. A nice riff here, a nice lead there, some interesting twist and turn in every song, and all of the above presented as a nice, optimal 16 minutes aural treatment.
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