Primordial – How it Ends (Album Review)

Release Date: September 29th 2023 - Metal Blade Records

Primordial – How it Ends

Irelands Primordial are titans in the genre. Their work is unhurried and a seamless symbiotic relationship between their Celtic and black metal influences. After thirty-two years and nine albums, including 2018’s brilliant Exile Amongst the Ruins, they have transcended the genre and returned with album number ten ‘’How it Ends””.

Led by the nuanced and intelligent lyricism of A.

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A. Nemtheanga and his excellent vocals, Primordial have always asked the important questions,  provoking and challenging,, set against some excellent tremolo riffs and the triplet rhythms of their heritage and homeland ‘’ Nothing New Under the Sun’’ asks the question of has it all been done while ‘’ Call to Cernunnos’’ is a piece of primal percussive fury that slowly and inexorably consumes the listener with its deliberate rhythm. The production is absolutely massive and lets every instrument shine in particular the work of drummer Simon O’Laoghaire that gives the album a real classic metal edge and allows the Celtic influences to shine through the guitar work.

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‘’ We Shall Not Serve’’, and the title track the slow burn versus the blistering yet both brilliant, deliberate in their intent and executed brilliantly.

‘’ All Against All’’ is a more traditional black metal riff-infused monster of stomping proportions that seethes in mid-tempo fury, ‘’ Death Holy Death’’ is a huge slab of pure metal that allows the vocals to shine against a jazz-infused Sabbath backbeat. ‘’ Victory Has 1000 Fathers, Defeat Is an Orphan’’ is the more traditional Primordial, its Celtic rhythms set against the more primal percussion and its final riff utter perfection. Speaking of excellent riffing, the brief ‘’ Traidisiúnta’’ is yet another highlight.

‘’How it Ends’’ is a massive confrontational beast of an album. Defiant and angry. Set against the ugly violent truth of history and the malaise of the present, it asks the ultimate questions of who will stand and rebel against their environment. Primordial makes utterly heavy music that matters, cares, and asks for a return on the investment.

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Primordial: Facebook

Release Year: 2023
Label: Metal Blade Records
Category: Album
Country: Ireland

Reviewed by Sparky