Woods of Belial - _Deimos XIII_
(Firebox Records, 2003)
by: Xander Hoose (5.5 out of 10)
After a slow, haunting intro ("Worm of Na'ruq"), all hell breaks loose. Or at least that's what you would expect; unfortunately, Woods of Belial's sluggish doom metal is far from powerful or intrusive. Instead, we are served a somewhat bland and poorly mixed album with three songs clocking over ten minutes and one clocking a little under. Most of them feel like a lifetime though, and they manage to let all the obligatory ingredients pass by as well -- the cheesy keyboard backset on "Halla", the church bells on "The 13th Horror". They even mixed in a bit of industrial, according to the bio. I'm sorry, but throwing a few effects over the mix doesn't make this music any more industrial than your average doom metal band --especially the half-hearted attempt at ambient industrial on "Pervertum II", which is not even worth listening to. 51 minutes is a long ride if there's not much happening; if Woods of Belial can learn that no one is forcing them to write ten-minute-plus songs and that they should compact their songs, I will give them another chance.

(article published 31/7/2004)


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