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'The Satanist'
(Nuclear Blast)

jools green

Jools Green


It's undoubtedly been a difficult road leading to the creation of 'The Satanist', the tenth album from Polish Metal maestros Behemoth.

Something that has only helped to make this the exceptional album that it is, Nergal's battle and triumph over leukemia, has undoubtedly impacted on its conception.

I couldn't get my head around it on the first listen. It took three or four to fully appreciate the depth of content and to try and get an understanding of just what the album is about as the lyrical content is very much open to interpretation. It also had, initially, the difficult job of following after their two most recent, excellent albums, which were also of exceptional quality, 2007s 'The Apostasy' and 'Evangelion' in 2009.

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'The Satanist' is instantly recognizable as the blackened death quartet's work; it's a strong and positive offering, the sound is slightly less heavy in places than previous albums but there is a richer and more intense mood.

It's densely layered and often darkly sinister with an even greater use of Middle Eastern influences than on its predecessors and after a career that has so far spanned twenty three years, this release marks the beginning of a new and strong chapter for Behemoth.

An impact is made from the opening moments of first track 'Blow Your Trumpets Gabriel' (originally released as a single and album teaser in December 2013) densely furnished with plodding grandeur, opening out to become a mid-paced beast of a track. There is a good mix across the tracks from the perspective of pace so the whole album keeps your interest.


'Furor Divinus' has a faster tempo that's very blackened and intense and there's a fury to Nergal's vocals. Across the whole release his voice has a greater clarity than previously, there is less vocal layering, relying on the sheer power of his voice and there also is good use but not overuse of chants and spoken elements.

'Messe Noire' is a blackened symphony of blasphemy with an excellent guitar segment towards the finish but my favourite track is 'Ora Pro Nobis Lucifer'. I love every aspect, the pace of the track, the drum patterns, black Metal riffs and on top of all that, the vocals are brutally engaging and exciting.

'Amen' is an intense blackened onslaught of drums and guitars. The title track 'The Satanist' is another stand out track for me, not just for how good it sounds but how different it sounds, having a different feel from the others completely, as it opens, there's a wonderfully ominous, hollow vastness to the sound, all the aspects are very pronounced and large, with a great guitar segment after the midpoint and the whole atmosphere is dark sinister and haunting.

'Ben Sahar' is sinister, blackened and awash with Eastern influences and Nergal's phrasing and vocal emphasis is powerful and dynamic. 'In The Absence Ov Light' is to the greater part intense but with a reflective and powerful spoken element in the first half while 'O Father O Satan O Sun!' is a massively atmospheric and powerful album ender.

What also helps to make this such a great album is the great production, no surprises that the band were heavily involved in this aspect. I have always had a huge amount of admiration for all the work of Behemoth, and even more so after hearing this album. It's excellent and Nergal sums it up perfectly with his statement about the album: "'The Satanist' is magic. It's dangerous. It's adventurous, and it's organic!"

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Wacken Winter Nights 2018 takes place between February 23rd and 25th 2018 and the great news is that you can now experience a full-on, top class German Metal Festival easily and affordably.

It only takes an hour to fly to Hamburg from London and we've had longer journeys than that within the capital and they were certainly more expensive than the £33 air ticket that just appeared in our 'flights to Wacken Winter Nights' search.


Wacken Winter Nights is organised by the same team who are responsible for the world's greatest Metal festival, Wacken-Open-Air and the 2018 bill includes Skyclad, Orphaned Land, Elvenking, Finntroll, Grave Digger, Aeverium, Comes Vagantes, Coppelius, Corvus Corax, Die Pressgëng, Elvellon, Heimataerde, Hell-O-Matic, Ignis Fatuu, Ingrimm, Irdorath, Johnny Deathshadow, Krayenzeit, Letzte Instanz, Mr Hurley und die Pulveraffen, Pampatut, Pat Razket, Schandmaul, Sündenrausch, The Aberlour's, The Moon And The Nightspirit, Torfrock, Visions Of Atlantis, Vroudenspil, Wind Rose and more.

Besides this rich billing of superb Metal bands, there is so much more to see in the festival area including the medieval market and also the walking acts and jugglers you will meet at the theme worlds, including Robert Blake, three-time World Cup winner of street magic.

Wacken Winter Nights is something not to be missed and you can check out the amazing ticket and accommodation prices right here.

We just priced up the whole four day trip with hotels, flights, shuttles and festival tickets for less than £300 and we don't think you will get a better value festival than that, anywhere.


MetalTalk recently sat down with Wacken founder and owner Thomas Jensen and that interview will be online next week and it's a fascinating insight into how Wacken originated from nothing to become the world's premiere Heavy Metal event.


Wacken 2018 takes place from 2nd to 4th August 20218 and as with Wacken Winter Nights, if you have never experienced all it has to offer, then you owe it to yourself to remedy that.

Already announced for Wacken 2018 are Judas Priest, Nightwish, Running Wild (exclusive), Arch Enemy, Dirkschneider, Doro (Special Anniversary Show), In Extremo, Sepultura, Amorphis, Amaranthe, Firewind, W.A.R., Belphegor, Mantar, Knorkator, Deserted Fear, Watain, Night Demon, Epica, Knorkator, Belphegor, Firewind, Deserted Fear and many more and we'll have more Wacken 2018 announcements during December.

As well as being the greatest Heavy Metal festival in the world, it is without a doubt the Mecca of Metal and the one thing that every single person who loves our music should have on their bucket list.

For 2018, MetalTalk have joined forces with Wacken-Open-Air to help you get to Wacken easily and inexpensively and you can peruse the ticket and travel options right here.

If you are interested in going to Wacken 2018 and have questions, please fill out the form below and we will contact you with answers to all your enquiries. You are under no obligation whatsoever by filling this form out. We won't add you to any mailing lists or send you loads of spam - all we will do is help you get to Wacken as easily and inexpensively as possible.



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