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Shadow Music Ryan Harding Review by
Ryan Harding
War: We Are War
Necropolis Records

How did this one avoid disaster? The line-up went from All, Blackmoon, It, Mikael Hedlund, and Pete Tagtren to All and Blackmoon (and Blackmoon was very vocal about wanting WE ARE WAR suppressed by Necroplis because he wanted to re-record it).

After all this, you can't expect them to outdo TOTAL WAR. But they don't falter, either. The results are very satisfying. All (vox) and Blackmoon (guitars) brought on IN AETERNUM's Impious (bass) and HYPOCRISY skinsmen Lars to lend their talents. Already that's one strike against them - anyone who's heard The Abyss knows Tagtren blows Lars away. And Lars would be no match for possible replacement on the re-recording, Equimanthorn (ex-DARK FUNERAL). He does an adquate job here, though some of his blasts struggle ("Hell").

The main strength is Blackmoon, who throws some BATHORY, SODOM, and SLAYER into the proceedings, making the final product more thrashier than blackened.

Their original goal was SHOW NO MERCY worship, said Blackmoon in interviews. WAR revels in their boundaries - you can't tell me they didn't find writing a song like "Rapture 2" or "Infernal" amusing as hell. Other decimators include "Ave Satan," "Soldiers of Satan," and the title track. The thirty minutes goes by fast, with most every song maintaining a brisk if not all out blistering pace. They conclude with a good rendition of SODOM's "Bombenhagel." While MARDUK has little to fear in warfare competition, this isn't a misfire by any means. Blackmoon may never get around to re-doing this, but even if he does this is still an album that solidly stands by itself.


Perplex SkullPerplex SkullPerplex SkullPerplex Skull

This review copyright 1999 E.C.McMullen Jr.

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