Behemoth - _Satanica_
(Avantgarde, 1999)
by: Pedro Azevedo (9 out of 10)
Few, very few opening tracks have ever managed to blow me away like "Decade of Oepion" did. Would all the album have been as devastatingly excellent and it would have definitely received full marks from me. However, the previous sentence should not be seen as indication that _Satanica_ contains one superb track and then just some more or less average material; in fact, the following seven tracks are all very impressive as well and there is plenty of material on _Satanica_ well worth a 10 out of 10, even though the amazing power of "Decade of Therion" is the definite highlight of the album. _Satanica_ is a hugely intense and powerful album throughout, thanks to a superb rhythmic backbone, devastating guitar work and tremendous vocals, all this delivered through equally talented production. For some reason, I had never really noticed this Polish band before, but the nearly 25 minute long live CD that comes with the limited edition version of _Satanica_ for a slight increase in price got me in touch with some of their more than likely impressive back catalogue. The live CD features decent sound and a competent performance from the band. Though as far as I know Behemoth have been known to this date as a black metal band, _Satanica_ has a venomous, sharp and brutal sound that contains plenty of high-speed death metal elements which the band really takes to very unusual heights. And since Behemoth are from Poland, there's one more thing that may be relevant for this review: I found _Satanica_ quite superior to anything I've heard from Vader so far.

(article published 12/10/1999)

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