Eternal - _Satanic Templars of the Dark Age_
(Sinister Sounds, 2005)
by: T. DePalma (7 out of 10)
French death metal is an unknown commodity to most. Given the country's numerous output of black metal groups over the past decade (of course there are several of considerable note), some might be hesitant to inquire into another genre when the one seems so perfectly suited. Likewise, the same is said in regard to the United States, except the notion is reversed, better substantiated and easily more contemptuous.

French group Eternal brings us this MCD, at least proving their talent for death metal songcraft, even if they may be an exception to the rule. Bringing together members of black metal group Crystalium and another French death metal band, Hysteria, the style presented here is a mix of throttling, Incantation-esque tritones and conquering melodies a la Malevolent Creation (_Envenomed_). There's absolutely nothing to be fleshed off from any of these four tracks, raining serrated riffs in tandem with virulent hell-growls. The conservative use of leads is also well done, ehancing the songs without appearing gaudy. This is solid but not groundbreaking, and I would recommended it for its vigor and ability to transcend the tedius cliché of "brutality" with actual substance.


(article published 15/3/2005)

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