Satanic Angel - _Raping Christ_
(Deadsun Records, 2006)
by: Kostas Sarampalis (4.5 out of 10)
Hailing from Grimsby, UK, _Raping Christ_ is Satanic Angel's debut release after just one demo in 2003. They play straight up death metal with some melodic and atmospheric touches, mostly mid to fast paced, with plenty of solos and tempo variations. Written and performed by one man only, though they are a full band for live performances, it suffers from the jack of all trades musicianship. Although Phil is indeed a competent guitarist and the riffs and solos he comes up with can hold themselves up nicely, the same cannot be said for the drumming, which is uninspired and at certain points oddly timed and slightly annoying. His death vocals are good, deep growls that suit the music.

Opener "Suffocation at Birth" is not the best track in the album (mostly because the drumming just gets in my nerves), but it does finish with a nice melodic solo. It gets better as the album progresses and I found "Possessed" and "Raping Christ" rather enjoyable and in all honesty much better than the first two tracks. The album also includes two keyboard instrumentals: "Reflection", which is OK, and "Final Calling" as an outro, which is rather pointless.

The production does not do the music any favours, as it is recorded in a home studio, but it is serviceable. I am surprised that they have only released one demo and then went straight ahead to release a full-length. Indeed, if this was a demo I would certainly give it two thumbs up, as there is definitely some effort, enthusiasm and guts spilled in there, and they have potential. But as a full-length proper release, it trips itself due to inexperience. If they work as a proper group, find a decent drummer (I cannot comment on the live drummer as I have not heard him), improve the production and become a bit more coherent in their songs, the next release will probably be a very good album. For now, I can recommend _Raping Christ_ only to hardcore death metal fans and underground aficionados.

Contact: http://www.satanicangel.tk

(article published 6/11/2006)


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