Krieg - _Sono lo Scherno_
(Battle Kommand Records, 2005)
by: T. DePalma (7 out of 10)
Originally recorded in 1998 and only partially released on a split CD with Kult ov Azazel, this is the full version of what is technically Krieg's second album; and it intends to make you suffer. I don't mean that as an enthusiastic sound-byte. I'm warning you.

Based on the historical Black Death, this album is something of a protean statement that features familiar key tones and buzzsaw guitars mixed with film samples and strange interludes, creating a chilling ambience (Imperial screaming over an outtake of classical music is the epitome of dementia). Fisting through a sonicating canvas of feedback, these rhythm shifts push on the listener, shoving one into and out of focus without warning.

What's strange is how far apart this is from both Krieg's previous album _Rise of the Imperial Hordes_ and the later works up to the _Patrick Bateman_ MCD, which is a kind of mature return. This may be the most descanting recording in Krieg's entire canon, with a much looser, impromptu style of performance. Contrary to popular gripes, it's obvious that Imperial and co. can play in time, but are consciously aiming to sound a mess and, maybe, piss you off.

Of the twelve tracks here, only their cover of Nunslaughter's "Power of Darkness" sounds fully together. (In contrast, the recording of "Black Ash Snowfall" is the absolute worst I've ever heard.) Also obvious is that there is a careful emphasis to cover for technical shortcomings when need be, as on the acoustic pieces that are still rough but work as simple period imitations. Still, most of this seems like too much to handle for the band itself and becomes more of a curiosity, representing the absolute edge of madness but not necessarily conquering it as a weapon.


(article published 26/4/2005)

7/31/2004 T DePalma 10 Krieg - The Black House
4/13/1998 A Lewandowski 8 Krieg - Rise of the Imperial Hordes
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