I stopped hoping for “Pentagram
” or “Antichrist
” 2.0 after Gorgoroth
ruined everything with “Destroyer
”. The latter I consider to be the weakest entry in the band’s diabolically charged career, with the worst being the remake of "Under the Sign of Hell
"; one of few holy grails of black metal. With Hat
permanently leaving the rank, Gorgoroth
is not as strong as they first came out. However, Infernus
’ latest brainchild “Instinctus Bestialis
” seems to speak otherwise with flawed arguments on a premise that he does not want to live in the past.
“Radix Malorum” does not waste any time from helping to introduce the band’s new preacher Atterigner of Triumfall
fame. His vocals are rather flat. Hell
, even a great singer like Hat
could hardly vary his singing style. But with Atterigner, his vocals sound a bit hollow as if his soul is gone when he tracks the vocals for this album. It is more of deep growl than anything else. To some extent, his voice does fit with the thick wall of guitars. Most of the time, his vocals are an oddity with limited range, staying perfectly where it is supposed to be without venturing beyond the set threshold. Vocal-wise, Atterigner is just not your adventurious kind. The guitars are more or less recycled from “Twilight
of the Idols
– In Conspiracy
” and “Ad Majorem Sathanas
Goriam”. You can clearly hear the death metal chugs throughout the album. If you are expecting Gorgoroth
to return home with ice-thin riffing ala “Antichrist
”, you will definitely be disappointed. In “Dionysian Rite
bursts through the song with rhythm progression that is strongly reminiscent of “Profetens Apenbaring”.
Worry not, though, as Infernus
hired three axemen to play some interesting solos on this record. “Ad Omnipotens Aeterne Diabolus” starts out similar to “Rebirth
” from “Quantos Possunt ad Satanitatem Trahunt
” but blasts its way upon entering the verse section. Just when I thought Gorgoroth
don’t seem to have it in them anymore, this mid-paced song has some neoclassical flavored riffs and they are surprisingly good at bringing down the atmosphere to the level of depression. It may not be the strongest track in the band’s career, but it is certainly noteworthy, especially with “Burn
in His Light” where Infernus
showcase a rather interesting blackened death metal rhythm on the verse part. This is also the song where you get to hear some decent melodic solos that are very well performed. By solos I mean not the wankery type. The song also ends appropriately with Dissection
like riff, which is also a clever attempt at making this album interesting to listen to. The same technique is used in the next track “Rage
” albeit with a certain awkwardness to it. Still, it takes three guys to play some short solos when one person is probably more than enough.
The last two tracks are average fillers. Nothing
really interesting going on, just watered-down black metal assault strangled with death metal ligatures.
While the bass is quite audible even by Gorgoroth
standard, the drums especially snare sound retarded and annoying at times. I am no fan of triggered drums. Even if Asklund chooses not to use it, his snare sounds like some obnoxious kid slapping wet sheet of plastic with a fly swatter. It’s too thin for music this fat. Overall, not a bad album by any means. Most songs are forgettable except for “Burn
in His Light”. Fortunately though, I anticipate nothing stunning from Gorgoroth
’s latest offering, and the album speaks for itself. Infernus
is still able to churn out nasty riffs with his trademark neoclassical affinity, but in the end, “Instinctus Bestialis
” just lacks the necessary qualities needed to make an album great and aesthetically significant.
Download it. Buy it. Or stay away from it completely. The choice is yours.