What a punch in the face! It had been a while since an album made such an impact on me, and this Blood Red Throne release is one hell of a masterpiece.
You’d expect a Norwegian metal band to explore the dark abysses of life and evil through shrieking black metal, but Blood Red Throne takes their music to the most extremely beautiful violence of death metal. What is there to say? Imperial Congregation has all it takes to be a death metal masterpiece: mean and evil riffs, a very present bass sound, perfectly beaten drums, and a voice that comes from the depths of hell.
The riffs fluctuate between twisted sick patterns and a full-on effective groove that makes you stomp like a huge troll out of their cave. Some riffs are reminiscent of a Cannibal Corpse-Esque vibe that haunts you while you enjoy a good punch in the face. To make it short: all the riffs are perfectly well balanced, between groove, technicality, brutality, and efficiency. Lead guitar-wise, there is only straightforward soloing and lead work, no useless flexing, all in the service of evil and brutality, and you rarely hear that amount of mean and haunting guitars anymore in metal.
The vocals are so low and deep that they’re sounding like the singer still has blood stuck in his throat, and that it’s that greasy tone to these deep and low gutturals. The vocals are really there to play their role and not in any way just to fill in.
Then comes the talk about the bass, and boy that bass is so thick, and we’re dealing with a virtuoso of a bassist. The bass lines are tasty to a point where you never get enough of them, the tone is tweaked to perfection, and it reeks of a Warwick factory. Throughout the album, it emphasizes the parts which need so, and it shows great complementarity with the guitars.
The production meddles with perfection, as everything breathes perfectly to my taste, and it doesn’t leave much to comment on as nothing oversteps on anything, and all the components of a song perfectly overlap on each other.
Blood Red Throne: Facebook
Release Year: 2021
Label: Nuclear Blast Records
Reviewed by Oussama EL OUADIE