While they may have been around for 34 years now, Necronomicon only released four albums before taking a 10-year hiatus between ’94 and ’04, and are now releasing their ninth album without appearing to have lost any vitality along the way.

Sedately building the riffs before Freddy’s vocals come in for “Burn And Fall”, he and Mike work their guitars into a frenzy from the chorus onwards with Chris’s precision timing on the drums making sure that they and Marco’s bass don’t rush to the end of the song too quickly.

A bit of an antithesis from Metallica, but somehow using a similarly paced riff structure “Leave The Lights On” is clearly 80’s thrash at its best.

While I’m not certain if it’s the same one, they have a song called “Total Rejection” on their ’84 demo of the same name and it’s pretty straight forward no frills thrash all the way.

The slow metronomic tempo gives the guitars a sense of urgency as they build but cannot overstep, until there’s a fermata and rapid tempo change, which the guitars really get behind, making “Malevolent” far more than interesting, and Chris really work his socks off, literally.

The chorus lyric is a little weird, but somehow it also works by the way they sing “We Did We Do” with a bit of strange intonation.

“Imperial Hunger” is extremely ‘Outcast’ era Kreator, with the same resonant vocal style and chunky riffs. While “My Name Is Vengeance” relies heavily on the second guitar melody playing alongside the heavier riff to give the song a slightly lighter feel than you’d expect.

The piano intro for “Forbid Me From Living” could come straight out of an 80’s horror, as you’re expecting a twist, which comes in the form of a long and flowing lead before the guitars get heavier but doesn’t stop once they do.

For some reason “Unleashed” has a very slow feel to it, probably owing to the steady drum beat that doesn’t build when the guitars increase their pace, along with the melodic vocal arrangement.

Even when the music gets faster and more aggressive, like on “Religion Live Fast”, they still manage to infuse the songs with a lighter melodic touch to just take the edge off a little.

There’s a bit of a squeak to Freddy’s vocals on “Personal Enemy”, but that could be because he’s being forced to sing a bit faster than on the other songs, so he’s upping the pitch along with the pace.

While I kept thinking of Overkill during “The Nightmare Continues”, it sounds nothing like their song and is a nice fast way of ending the album with its extremely rapid lead.

(7/10 Marco Gaminara)