Satyricon – Volcano

NO. Just NO. This album is SO INCONCEIVABLY TERRIBLE that I don’t even have the words to describe it. This is EXACTLY the sort of album that requires passages in ALL CAPS to illustrate just how UTTERLY AWFUL it is. There’s no excuse that Satyricon can use for putting out an album that’s so worthless, so undeniably terrible on every level, so limp-wristed and castrated that the very MENTION of ‘heavy metal’ is enough to make it cry like a nine year old girl. I’ve listened to this album all the way through precisely once. ONCE. I can’t even bear to listen to it even once more.

Satyricon was once a fairly boring but still legitimate black metal band that everyone liked for reasons that I never fully understood. Having seen a used copy of ‘Volcano’ sitting around the local record shop for about six dollars, I said why not and picked it up. Were it only that I could go back in time and KICK MYSELF IN THE BALLS until I could no longer bring it to the register, I would do it a thousand times over. Well, that’s not exactly true: I’d probably still buy it, just so I can know what the absolute nadir of musical effort is in modern heavy metal. I consider it something of a learning experience, kind of like how punching a hundred mirrors and then soaking your hand in Tabasco sauce teaches you that it’s probably not a good idea to do it in the future. Yes, it’s something you should know logically, but sometimes you need a bit of a kick to really imprint such an idea into your head.

Of the eight songs and agonizing fifty-five minutes of this LP, there are one and a half good songs. And all the good material is within the first half of the album. This means that there are six and a half songs with absolutely NO quality whatsoever to speak of. Now, that might be a good enough ratio for some of you, but I tend to set my standards a little higher. Even, I don’t know, three good songs would make me not want to die while listening to it. However, this album can’t even scrape up enough to make three solid tracks. You know, even if they just put ‘Mother North’ on here again, I’d tolerate it a great deal more simply because, even though it would be a repeat, that would be an additional good song that you could put in instead of something like ‘Angstridden’.

I suppose on some aesthetic level, this is sort of black metal. This means that there are raspy vocals, tremolo picked sections, and the occasional blast beat. That’s about as black metal as this album gets. The rest is third-rate Dimmu Borgir chugga chugga riffing, inane double bass patterns, and amelodic, underdeveloped melodies, all wrapped up with Satyr’s utterly trite vocal performance. This album just sucks in every way. There’s no shred of light on the terrible songs: no isolated good riffs or fills or trade-offs or anything that would bring me even the slightest interest. I can’t even appreciate this on a technical level, because THE INSTRUMENTATION IS SO SIMPLE. The riffs are five-note tremolo affairs or two-chord chugfests with nothing interesting going on at all.

So, as I said before, there’s one and a half good songs. The fully good track is opener ‘With Ravenous Hunger’. While not awesome in any way, it manages to be reasonably intense and ominous with Satyr’s trades between shrieks and spoken word passages, held together neatly by some decent riffing and a fairly robust percussive performance on the part of Frost. The half comes from some decent parts in ‘Fuel For Hatred’, which, while just being a rock song with double bass and rasping, manages to be more fun and headbanging than anything else here. The main riff is genuinely pretty cool, and I like listening to it. So. One and a half good songs, equaling to just over ten minutes of reasonable music. Then there’s three quarters of an hour of utterly horrible crap.

Each of the remaining songs is completely trite and boring, and not worth mentioning in even the slightest respect. Expect a bunch of boring crap. However, the one that I will take the time to write my hatred towards is the closing track, ‘Black Lava’. This takes all the worst elements of this album and drives them towards their logical extreme, resulting in a song that not only has nothing interesting going on at all, but somehow manages to extend its thirty seconds of ideas into FOURTEEN AND A HALF EXCRUCIATING MINUTES. I’m pretty sure that the last half of the song is NOTHING but the same two lines of lyrics repeated over the same riff and the same drumbeat and the same useless, effortless crap that defines this album. SO GAY.

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~ by noktorn on April 23, 2007.

2 Responses to “Satyricon – Volcano”

  1. It’s obviously alright for you not to like this album, that is your opinion and you are allowed that.
    But you think you would at least try to come across as professional.
    You sir fail at that and at your sad try at a review.
    I stumbled on this site just surfing around and because of you, I will NEVER return.

  2. Hahahahaha there is NO WAY that you can be real.

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