Malleus Maleficarum - _Taedium Vitae_
(Oaken Shield / Adipocere, 2002)
by: Pedro Azevedo (9 out of 10)
_Taedium Vitae_ may sound pretty raw and dirty, but it is remarkably engaging right from the first scream, riff and drum barrage on opening track "Bleeding Runes". The rough production is nonetheless powerful and drives Malleus Maleficarum's black/thrash home very efficiently. Desperate, searing vocals; harsh, inspired riffs; intense, varied drumming: these are the ingredients that Malleus Maleficarum have combined to turn _Taedium Vitae_ into a just over half hour long veritable black/thrash feast. While the vocals and guitar work are top notch for this genre, the quality of the drumming (which is well highlighted by the production) has to be emphasized: S. Nergal dazzles with the sheer speed of his drumming, but what's more unusual, also for the way the various elements of the drum kit are explored to keep the drum work interesting. Truly a powerful beast, in some ways akin to Svartsyn's excellent _...His Majesty_, _Taedium Vitae_ sees Malleus Maleficarum grow from unknown newcomers to top of their barrel in my books. Shame about the apparent production level problems during the otherwise great "Ancient Blood", but this is definitely one of those special records that can be thrown on for a half hour rush of sheer energy and metallic inspiration.


(article published 27/6/2003)

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