Wed 31st May 2017
Wode's second full length arrives as a bit of a surprise, with little fanfare building up to its release, but a most welcome one - striking while the iron is hot, rolling with the momentum of the superb self titled album that garnered such a positive woldwide response.
From the opening seconds of Crypt of Creation to the end of the penultimate Chaosspell (the last a sparse acoustic instrumental), it is evident that Wode have trodden further down the trad (extreme) metal path. It my be an obvious reference point for any and all music of the genre, but there's a black streak of Darkthrone influence running through the length of the album.
The opener is all feral black metal, a blizzard of riffs and cutthroat vocals, a slither of hope and emotion detectable, but quickly smothered and choked beneath the barrage. Celestial Dagger is sprightly paced, with venom spat vocals, a punk rotation that intensifies particularly in the last minute or so.
The Mancunians take the well established format and project new visions of hell upon it - witness Temple Interment's powerful black metal outlook, that leads out of a nightmarish hurricane of chaos with some delightfully old school riffs breaking loose. Chaosspell, the longest track, allows for an openness, an exploration that directs you down different paths beyond straight up BM battery, whilst remembering to never release the ugly intensity.
The title track is perhaps the perfect showcase of Wode's worth - exhibiting how they've become a real touch point for black metal in direct lineage of the second wave, reverent yes, but still original and not mere replays of what has gone before - of this time, up to date, well produced (not a given), lyrically rich and fearlessly bold. This is another superb album.