Behemoth, Evangelion

Jon Wiederhorn

By Jon Wiederhorn

on 06.14.11 in Reviews
Black/death metal songs that are at once crushing and captivating

Polish death/black-metal veterans Behemoth faced considerable adversity as they started working on their ninth album. With the popularity of 2007′s The Apostasy and a slot on the popular touring Mayhem Festival, kvlt purists questioned Behemoth’s credibility, leaving frontman Adam “Nergal” Darski with the challenge of crafting a record evil enough to silence skeptics and epic enough to retain mainstream fans. With Evangelion, Behemoth succeed on all levels. Darksi’s riffs are as heavy and inventive as Nile and Morbid Angel, his vocals are bloodcurdling and Zbigniew Robert “Inferno” PromiÅ„ski’s drumming is faster than agitated atoms in a cauldron of molten steel. Yet Evangelion is also saturated with melody, from haunting minor-key hooks over the main verse of “Ov Fire and the Void” to the ominous guitar chimes and undead choir chants of “He Who Breeds Pestilence.” In addition to writing majestic black/death metal songs that are at once crushing and captivating, Darski has upped the bar on his leads, delivering a muscular range of speedy, tuneful intros, trenchant transitional licks, and virtuosic solos. Twenty years into their career, Behemoth are at the top of their game.