Tuesday, 15 May 2012

ENTOMBED - Morning Star (2002)

01  Chief Rebel Angel
02  I For An Eye
03  Bringer Of The Light
04  Ensemble Of The Restless
05  Out Of Heaven
06  Young Man Nihilist
07  Year One Now
08  Fractures
09  When It Hits Home
10  City Of Ghosts
11  About To Die
12  Mental Twin

'Morning Star' is the seventh full length album by Swedish metal band Entombed. It was released in January 2002. After greasing up their long-dead engines with 'Uprising' in 2000, there was really only one path Entombed could be hiking...the one that would lead them back to the grave. Yes, Morning Star is the most metal release the band had written since the classic 'Clandestine', with even less of a rock infusion than 1993's 'Wolverine Blues'. That is not to say the band has abandoned the blues and punk influence of their past few albums, for it remains an 'option' here, used only in a few tracks and often to better effect than when it was the norm. There's also an increased attention here for the occult and religious themes which would persist through the albums following this ('Serpent Saints' in particular).

The album's main theme represents the temptations offered to man and freedom of choice.  It also explores the unpleasant consequences of making the wrong choices and falling prey to deception. I really enjoyed delving into the lyrics of this album, they explore man's oldest adversary, and the choices of good and evil and how temptation may be disguised as many things. For example, in "Ensemble of Restlessness", LG Petrov asks the listener "Is it the Truth or the image that makes your life worth living? You're in love with a dream of an image not given."  That's some pretty serious philosophical questions for a death metal band I'd say!

Musically, this is Entombed's 'back to basics' album. They don'y go back to their thrashy death metal days completely (there are a few songs of the style), but mostly they go back to their Wolverine Blues sound which brought them their biggest commercial success. 12 tracks of crushing, satantic themed 'Death'n'Roll'. Their signature raw but heavy gutiar tone is still here, and L.G. Pretrov sounds ferocious and convincing while screaming his satanic lines. Bass and drumming are what they usually are with this band, crushing and tight. In retrospect, I feel that Morning Star is just as good as Wolverine Blues. It may lack the utter savagery of that album or the novelty of its death & roll image, but it makes up for that with its huge tones and the dark humor of its lyrics.

*The songs "When It Hits Home" and "Chief Rebel Angel" draw heavy influence from the 1997 film The Devil's Advocate.

1 comment:

  1. nice to see a positive review of this album which seemed to divide fans for some reason. I actually think it's Entombed's best