BLOOD RED THRONE - Blood Red Throne

Blood Red Throne - Blood Red Throne

9 songs
35:37 minutes
***** ***


There are so many death metal bands around today that it’s easy losing count and forgetting about one that is actually rather popular, even though I can’t remember having heard of them before. Take for instance Blood Red Throne from Norway, a country usually better known for their black metal scene. And therefore it shouldn’t come as a surprise that founding and only remaining original member Død used to be the live guitarist for black metal legend Satyricon in the late Nineties. In 1998 he decided to found his own death meal band Blood Red Throne, and since then has released quite a few albums. The eponymous seventh album is their second on Sevared Records (before the band was signed to Hammerheart and then to Earache), and apart from Død, the other band members only joined the last two or three years.

Blood Red Throne can look back upon over 100.000 albums sold to date, and listening to their new material, I can understand very well. Today many contemporary death metal bands either head into the melodic Swedish direction, or even go as far as adopting trendy deathcore patterns. Not so Blood Red Thrones whose style can simply be labelled old school brutal death metal. The nine songs don’t even make it to forty minutes, and most of the time the band is playing at a very high speed. The double bass drum work is truly impressive, and ferocious guitar riffs are killing too. The guttural vocals may not be original, but they are definitely well done and remind of an earlier, simpler time when death metal was a primitive, menacing music. Of course there is also always room for more melodic solos which prevent the band from sounding monotonous. Also you will find groovier mid-tempo parts which furthermore help to add a sense of dynamics to the songwriting. This is best shown on the steamroller of a hit Primitive Killing Machine where the title shows already what to expect.

Blood Red Throne may not be an overly original band, but they sure are deft at incorporating old school death metal full of brutality and which never lacks aggression. At times they remind me of earlier Cannibal Corpse or of a faster Six Feet Under. So despite their Northern European origins, Blood Red Throne rather sound like a West Coast American band from the early Nineties. As someone who discovered death metal quite early on, this is of course very pleasing for me. I don’t know if the younger generations will also get their kicks out of these Norwegian deathsters, but it sure wouldn’t hurt them to check out where all the brutal music they are listening to today actually came from.

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