Kreator - Enemy Of God
The bar was set very high after the formidable comeback to the top of the thrash scene with Violent Revolution (2001). The talk that has been going on since a few tasters were released from this album was hinting about an even more aggressive, fast and furious effort. I guess that many with me were wondering if one dares hoping for that. I have listened to the ready result several times now, and I have to say: if not better, it is definitly just as good, and absolutely not less. This is a logical continuation of Violent Revolution, and it picks up where it left us last time.
I think there is better riffing on this album than in a long time, and that is one thing that immediatly struck me. It's more in quantity and a tiny bit more intense and diverse then previously. The other thing is that there are plenty of leads and great hooks which are carrying this outburst forward, and it sounds and feel fresh and vital. The tempo is slightly slower then on Violent Revolution, but it has more depth and pondus. There is also a lot of work with twin guitar harmonies, which turns out very good. Milles vocals might not be absolutely on top anymore, but he still has what it takes to deliver the aggression Kreator want to project, and it's still way above average. Everything produced by maestro Andy Sneap, which always garantuee an album to have a fat, rich and crystal clear sound. So even in this case, even if I miss a little bit of that "full" sound picture the last album had.
There is again a bit of Slayer to be found in this, which does not come as news really, but perhaps it's a tiny bit more this time then before in modern days. For example World Anarchy - take away the vocals, and musically it would fit on Reign In Blood and could fool me any day of the week if confronted with it and asked what it was.
There are perhaps a slight lack of choruses or hooks that stick, or even really high peaks, but what makes up to that is the flow and the good riffs that carry you along the way. But then again, Kreator have never really made albums with "hits", but instead they have held a consistant high and even level. Stand out tracks on this one are the ones where he tries out a slightly different approach. It might be a different way of building up a song and a chorus or just a new sound baked in here and there. For example the refrain in Voices Of The Dead makes me think of something Hypocrisy could have done, and in Dying Race Apocalypse he sings in a slightly different way during the verse, which builds up to a more melodic refrain than normal with guitarleads backing it up.
Splendid, and a perfect opener of the metal year Anno 2005.