Samael Above

Samael Above
Samael's latest begins with a melodic and mechanized blast of black violence. It continues in a constant onslaught of blackened mechanical precision. And it ends in a battery of dark metal machine worship. The trade-off that replaced bouncy electro-metal with a much more brutal flavour of intensity was a resounding success, but something of the band's range got lost along the way. Still, what Above loses in diversity it gives back in nostalgic ferocity, nearly burying dark, narrow melodies under a metallic fusillade of riffs and drum hits. But when you "give it all you've got" in the album's opening seconds, there are few places left to go, and very little space to breathe on your way there. For fans who like the feel of suffocating under an avalanche of sound, cranking Above should do the trick; it has enough monumental bulk to lay you out flat. But stick around and you might find yourself coming up for air on the other side, if your ears have the patience and discernment to reach the more subtle intricacies hiding there. (Nuclear Blast)