Dimmu Borgir Puritanical Euphoric Misanthropia

Finally, these Norwegian black metallers have put out an album that we all knew they were capable of. The keyboards have almost taken a backseat, although they are still present in the mix for the required atmospheric sections. It is the monstrous guitar riffs and spot on drumming, courtesy of former Cradle of Filth banger Nick, that really dominates this outing. The record has more of a death metal feel than a black metal one, there are some really awesome, crushing riffs and Vortex (ex-Borknagar) blends in well with some of his trademark melodic vocal layering. The vocals, when mixed together with the black metal ones (which seems to sometimes be electronically altered), work very well together. The record also has more of a thicker, slicker sharpness to the production, as opposed to their older, reverb-filled sound. This may well wind up in a lot of year-end lists and it is indeed good enough to warrant consideration. (Nuclear Blast)