I can only really start this in the same fashion of a colleague on review of last Entartung album ‘Peccata Mortalia’ and wonder just why the two key proponents of the band Lykormas and Vulfolaic are considered as “veterans of the old-school black metal scene.” There are certainly no clues as to their origins to be found and along with shadowy photos of the players we can only assume that any past endeavours are shrouded in mystery. This and the fact that the cover art of their third album has such a mystical flavour casting magical images deep back in time certainly alludes to the feel that we are going to encounter something rather strange here and indeed as the album starts with ceremonial chants and strange dulcimer sounding pluckings we prepare for a feast of oddness. Quickly though the dead rise from these necromantic castings and ‘Resurrectio Mortuorum’ rampages forth with its spirit firmly rooted in the other thing we have been promised a deep sense of “timeless black metal traditionalism.”
The main twists and turns of the songs here adherently stick to the rules. Most are delivered at a mid-paced stodgy level with some heathen sense of bravado about them. Vocals are thick and coarse and work well with the clamour but and I hate to say this but any feeling of atmosphere and thinking outside the box that I had hoped for is pretty much lost. Entartung come across as wholly workmanlike, there are some asides to be found over the album such as a breakdown on this track allowing melody and glistening guitar tones to partly enchant but on the whole I find that I am on the whole left with an album that is all but forgotten once it has finished playing. Indeed at times this really plods and has a sense of black metal by numbers about it and although I find myself nodding my head along on numbers such as ‘Vices Of The Prophet’ it’s an all too familiar sermon that just doesn’t do the any convincing job of converting me to the cause. That said the melody that seeps in two thirds of the way through the number and continues as they draw it to an eventual close does have a real spark about it and if the whole album was along these lines I would no doubt have enjoyed it a lot more. All too soon though the next track starts and plods along for what seems like an inordinate amount of time as it literally goes nowhere.
In line with the opening part a midpoint short instrumental piece is very welcome and the sound of piano and flames cast an eerie glow to ‘Agni Kravyad’ a track that appears to suggest to Hindu mysticism if the title is to go by than anything else. After this ‘Der Werwolf’ can’t be accused of not having a bite and does have some hunger about it and the harsh Teutonic vocals sound suitably savage and feral. I wish I had taken as much away from this album as my aforementioned colleague did with the band’s last one but it just failed to captivate and that’s a shame as it does nothing essentially wrong but just left me with an underwhelming feel of averageness.
(6.5 Pete Woods)