Marduk – ‘Memento Mori’

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Black Metal

Century Media Records

Release Date – September 1st 2023

Review by Smudge

Marduk is named after a Babylonian storm god who created the earth and sky from the slain body of the dragon Tiamat, who along with her hubby Abzu, created the first gods. Marduk killed their son Kingu and mixed his blood with the earth to create humanity. I bet he wished he’d never bothered after seeing the utter balls up we’ve made of it.

Marduk has been around the extreme metal world since 1990 and has released an album virtually every two years since. Not bad going considering the brutal nature and energy they display. Here they are with their 15th studio album which they say is ‘a bold leap forward, a calculated sidestep and a wistful sideways glance.’ Well, let’s see.

Jeez, they don’t hang about and get straight into a solid Black Metal bounce on the title track before they’re let off the leash on the dark, nasty and relentless ‘Heart Of The Funeral’. Sounds of a grave being dug start ‘The Blood Of The Funeral’ then it blasts open into utter chaos with drummer Simon Schilling acting as the pacemaker for the dark weaving riff of guitarist Morgan Hakansson and David Rosten’s bass battery. It’s dark, disturbing and all-consuming. Marduk has never been afraid to slow down, and we get a doomy stomp on ‘Shovel Beats Sceptre’ before ‘Charlatan’ brings back the chaos on a razor-sharp rattler. The chaos continues on ‘Coffin Carol’ before Rosten’s distorted bass line gives way to the menacing classic Black Metal of ‘Marching Bones’. Sinister sounds and muffled riff gradually get clearer on ‘Year Of The Maggot’ before it blasts into a cacophony of wonderful brutal noise which continues on ‘Red Tree Of Blood’. The final track ‘As We Are’ comes down with a melodic guitar line (yes – melodic!) before it crushes into another doomy echoey dirge with additional vocals from the sadly departed LG Petrov from Entombed A.D.

Thirty years in the game and no signs of slowing down or becoming mainstream. This is nasty and aggressive with both a fuck you attitude and a don’t fuck with me attitude. I can relate to this because now being of a certain age I am less amenable easily irritated and irascible, but I now don’t give a toss who I upset. That’s one of the things I enjoy about getting older and this album mirrors my attitude and my dark heathen soul! Enjoy, I will.

Track List –

1 – Memento Mori

2 – Heart Of The Funeral

3 – Blood Of The Funeral

4 – Shovel Beats Sceptre

5 – Charlatan

6 – Coffin Carol

7 – Marching Bones

8 – Year Of The Maggot

9 – Red Tree Of Blood

10 – As We Are

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