Reviewed by Gird_09
The prolonged conflict over the legal rights to the name Gorgoroth was well publisized and doesn't need a reiteration here. Personally I have to admit I was unsure what Gorgoroth would be without Gaahl. Granted, he was only the band's vocalist for a limited time, but the way I see it that particular period was their prime.
However, from first note of this record my fears are dispersed. The extreme aggression is in no ways dimished, and Pest (the original vocalist) certainly knows his stuff. His style is different from Gaahl's and the change in sensibility is clearly discernable, and though I personally find Ad Majorem Satanas Gloriam to be their absolute best album this one is certainly a head above most anything that goes on in the metal scene today. The style is more melodic and slower, and perhaps closer to "classical" black metal – but more mature sounding. As such the album is an absolute success, though I am afraid it might also be a bit anonymous compared to earlier efforts. A consistent feature with Gorgoroth over the years has been intense beats, despite going through quite a number of different drummers. I am happy to say that this album continues in that vein.
In fact, considering the number of musicians that have at one point been associated with Gorgoroth it's an impressive feat from Infernus to maintain this level of musical quality and consistency over the years.
If there is anything I miss it would have to greater variation. It's good moody album, but I do have trouble seperating between the songs after the first listen. Knowing that the album was formed over such a long period, and during the aforementioned conflict makes this quite understandable, but still it does detract somewhat from the final product. Tracks like Aneuthanasia, Satan-Prometheus and Introibo ad Altarare Satanas easily stand out as the ones with most personality, while the others tend towards some degree of anonymity. (Sadly the final track is both the strongest and the shortest one.)
The album cover is a tasteful and minimalist rendition of a skull, with the band logo beneath it. Some of Gorgoroth's covers have been arty and more reminicent of something you'd expect from industrial ambient – while others have been more metal'ish. This cover is a blend between the two, and the imagery serves well to communicate the uncompromising bleakness of the band.
The album is no longer news however, as it was released nearly a year ago and we are allready eagerly awaiting a follow up – tentatively set to be released next year. Only time will if the conflict has damaged Gorgoroth as a "brand", but judging by Quantos Possunt ad Satanitatem Trahunt Infernus will keep the name at the forefront of contemporary black metal for some time to come. We can only hope that this album is a new beginning and not a swansong.
Norway, CD album, Regain Records, 2009
4 Building a Man
5 New Breed
6 Cleansing Fire
7 Human Sacrifice
9 Introibo ad Alatare Satanas