REVIEW: Behemoth – The Satanist [2014]


Band: Behemoth

Album: The Satanist

Labels: Nuclear Blast/Regain Records/Metal Blade

Preview: Ora Pro Nobis Lucifer

If you heard of metal, you heard of Behemoth. There is just no valid excuse, not even when you are literally sleeping under a rock; music like this will hunt you down no matter where you try to hide. The ungodly symphonies and pulverizing death metal assaults this Polish beast generates are ferocious enough to annihilate the gates of heaven itself. Their latest album The Satanist fits that description perfectly, perhaps even more so than any album that came before it. With an album title like The Satanist people are undoubtedly expecting big things but luckily for them; Behemoth delivers beyond all expectations once again.

Behemoth has a large cult following of fans that probably won’t be bothering themselves with reading any reviews like this, they already pre-ordered this album and are (im)patiently waiting to utterly destroy their eardrums to the long awaited follow-up of the 2009 album Evangelion. If you never heard of Behemoth or just never felt the need to check out their work, now would be the perfect time to correct that mistake and get in on the action, whether you normally listen to this genre or not. I don’t consider myself a die-hard fan of this band by any means, but after hearing The Satanist just once, I could only come to one conclusion: this album is the best damn death metal I heard in years, if not ever.

What makes the The Satanist stand out for me is its ability to never get boring. Like with previous albums, the unholy, dark lyrics put an evil grin on your face and make all the songs even more memorable. Once the epic build-up stops and the infernal shredding and face-pounding percussions start to eat away at your flesh in the second half of the first track Blow Your Trumpets Gabriel, you can expect an almost constant butchering of this magnitude throughout the album. The next track does just that, Furor Divinus is nothing less than the purest fucking death metal imaginable. Of course The Satanist has much more going for it than just straightforward anger, as Messe Noire and the following Ora Pro Nobis Lucifer will prove. Ominous melodics, shivering guitar solos and maniacal vocal attacks add several thick layers of atmosphere that keep you nailed to the ground. Amazingly, this multi-layered atmosphere gets more noticeable and thicker with each listen, each song more epic than the last. Two of my favorite songs Amen and the title track follow next and again seem to be even more mind blowing than the songs that preceded it. When you finally reach the end of the line, the final track O Father O Satan O Sun! ends this towering monument to Satanism in style, with lots of evil chanting and suffocating melodics it’s the final nail in your coffin before you are pulled down to the eternal burning depths of Hell. The Satanist demands more listens however,  Behemoth cleverly constructed all the songs in such a way that all individual elements are all blended in perfectly. Your mortal ears would demand multiple plays to comprehend and appreciate it all, just the way albums like this should be!

In all honesty, I coulnd’t find anything wrong with the The Satanist even if my life depended on it. With raging death storms, intriguing lyrics and deep underlying roots of blackened symphonies, Behemoth made a worthy successor to Evangelion that was well worth the wait.

Rating: 10/10

For fans of: Marduk, Sidious, Fleshgod Apocalypse, Kataklysm, Bloodbath