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Review: Satanic Warmaster - Carelian Satanist Madness
Satanic Warmaster
Carelian Satanist Madness

Label: Werewolf Records
Year released: 2005
Duration: 40:56
Tracks: 8
Genre: Black Metal


Review online: February 19, 2009
Reviewed by: Brett Buckle
Readers' Rating
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Rated 3.79/5 (75.88%) (34 Votes)

Black Metal has come a long way from its beginnings and is now probably the most diverse metal genre of them all. However, sometimes all you want to do is kick back and listen to some utterly filthy and hateful Black Metal, the kind pioneered by the old guard — crusty, blasphemous, stripped back raw Black Metal. Satanic Tyrant Werewolf, mastermind behind the awesomely named Satanic Warmaster has spent the last eight years delivering just that, and Carelian Satanist Madness is perhaps his finest hour.

What we have is seven tracks of raw Black Metal, 100% riffs and low-fi blasphemy, and one skippable track of pipe organ synths and croaking ranting. Now, while I can do without that last track, the seven that precede it are filled to overflowing with some seriously catchy yet downright evil metal. By most standards the production is poor with a crusty, crunchy guitar tone and minimalist drum sound, but I must confess I find it very good — perhaps a sign I have been listening to too much Black Metal. It is fuller and heavier than is typical of the prototypical Black Metal it draws its inspiration, and apart from that annoying "washing machine" pulse during some of the faster parts, it truly is ideally suited to the music.

Kicking straight in with "The Vampiric Tyrant" Satanic Warmaster does not bother with intros, ambient or otherwise; straight up Black Metal riffs are the order of the day here. The pace varies but mostly consists of mid-paced riffs whose one desire is to get your head banging and the horns flying. We do get some dramatic touches such as the start of the title track, which, while not bothering with a narrative as such, still manage to bring some epic flourishes to its 8+ minutes of blackened glory, including a great old school riff for the chorus. I won't belabour the point by going into individual tracks since every track is chock full of great metal riffs, whether they be thrashy, razor tremolos or open and flowing chord progressions, the quality and the variation will keep your head nodding and your brow furrowed. The vocals of Mr. Tyrant Werewolf (best Black Metal pseudonym ever!) are caked in just the right amount of filth — the hellborn vocal chords of a union between Abbath and Nocturno Culto, and just like you'd guess, they never get boring or tiring.

Carelian Satanist Madness is a no bullshit (well the last track is pretty crap, and I've docked half a point for it), riff-tastic riff-o-rama with enough filth, hate and spite to make the Mona Lisa frown and fear for her anal virginity. If production is important to you then you should pass on by (and besides, you're probably some kind of poser anyway), but for any fan of extreme metal this a true diamond in the rough, and although it's pretty hard to track down you should do anything up to, and including, tattooing 666 on your own genitals to get one.

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