Diaboli - _Mesmerized by Darkness_
(Unisound Records, 1996)
by: Henry Akeley (8 out of 10)
Lord Pete, the one man behind this one-man black metal project from Finland, is a no-frills kind of guy: "NO atmospheric parts, NO progress, NO melancholic passages, and of course NO melody," boasts the Diaboli bio. That pretty much saves me the trouble of describing the music on this CD! It's completely unoriginal... but it also really smokes. More than anything, this sounds like a (just barely) updated version of the classic Bathory stuff from the days before Quorthon started playing 'viking metal.' In other words, pretty raw recording of raspy vocals and repetitive-but-catchy, evil riffs cranked out at a variety of speeds from crawling slow to (mostly) blasting fast. Song structures are quite simple, but there are plenty of tempo changes to keep things interesting, and the drumming is solid and powerful at every speed. Cool riffs, too, even if they're nothing fancy. In fact, this whole album is oddly refreshing, since it's completely free of all those artsy embellishments which have basically become black metal cliches--and which can get pretty corny when they're not done right. It just rocks, and that's it. Nice going, Lord Pete.

(article published 17/7/1996)

1/2/1997 S Hoeltzel Diaboli: Diabolic Dialogue
11/20/2000 A McKay 6 Diaboli - Anthems of Sorrow
3/10/1998 S Hoeltzel 7 Diaboli - Towards Damnation
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