Go-nowhere blast-beats and very fast meaningless riffs juxtaposed with stereotypical NYDM – think Suffocation’s “Breeding the Spawn,” but fake and gay – sections all covered in generic-core ancient Egyptian fluff.
Remove the aesthetics and all that remains on “Vile Nilotic Rites” is average modern technical death metal with some occasional catchy parts and decent doom sections.
With some mental effort and a willingness to let go of their try-hard Egypto-proctologist gimmick, Nile has the potential to release some good material but they have become far too entrenched in their post-2019 “The Satan Records” style and thus should make amends by returning the money they stole from much more talented bands (Baphomet, Suffocation, Vermin, Infester, Incantation).
The most egregious parts of this album “Vile Nilotic Rites” are certainly when Nile attempts to penetrate the deathcore market by adding unnecessary stop/start nu-metal riffing to otherwise generic stadium rock drivel. Almost like a death metal version of Gorgoroth, only slightly less overtly homosexual and more Egyptian.
Metalheads should never forget how once upon a time death metal was music for rebels, outsiders and the most subversive elements of society.
Today? As showcased by Behemoth‘s latest turd release “Opvs Contra Natvram,” death metal is all but castrated and all its rage and controversy are being actively channeled into the harmless catch-all “modern metal” commercial label.
This album manages to be even more artistically void than Behemoth’s already subpar earlier releases, namely “I Loved You at Your Darkest” and the pathetic nu-metal cash-grab “The Satanist.” Cringe.
The dividing line between Behemoth and bands like Arch Enemy is getting increasingly porous. What a sad state of affairs modern death metal has become.
The best way one could describe the music on Behemoth’s “Opvs Contra Natvram” is, sadly, by calling it pussy metal. And that’s saying a lot, considering Behemoth’s output barely qualifies as “heavy metal” at all, let alone “true brutal death metal” whatever.
Death metal has clearly been on a downward spiral since the days of Infester, Incantation, Suffocation and Morbid Angel, and Behemoth’s latest “Opvs Contra Natvram” exemplifies everything wrong with the “outside-in” mentality so pervasive to nowadays extreme metal. 100% aesthetics, 0% substance.
Avoid this quasi-metalcore garbage. Replace with “Khranial,” “Demon Rituals” or any other real, actually brutal death metal.
Arch Enemy is a cancer that is slowly but surely destroying the extreme metal scene from within with their odious cultural appropriation and misrepresentation of heavy metal tropes and likeness.
They suck, they produce terrible music, and they present a face that only serves to ridicule the metal genre and its fans in the eyes of normal people.
Away with the Arch Enemy nonsense, as it tarnishes the image and legacy of heavy metal music in ways that even shitcore parody bands like Anal Cunt, Morsay and Warkvlt could never hope to achieve.
Just look at the “movie” video below and tell me if there isn’t a problem with Arch Enemy and what they attempt to force down our throats, claiming it is so-called “brutal death metal” music when nothing could be further from the truth.
This manages to be actually WORSE than modern pop music like Taylor Swift, Justin Beaver and Dua Lipa. So much for “brutal death metal.”
But this raises the very valid question: what is heavy metal?
The Definition of Heavy Metal
These metal albums have stayed in weekly rotation over the years:
The reason my analysis is different from that of other so-called “metal review” sites is that most writers look at try hard novelty and superficial gimmicks – such as “this band has a transgender woman singer” (Arch Enemy) or “that band can play Burzum riffs with supersized dildos sticking out of their shit holes” (Dark Funeral) – whereas I focus on quality music, the type you can listen to for decades without ever being bored, something that clearly can’t be said of either Arch Enemy or the rest of the modern extreme metal cargo cult “scene.”
The popular “best of” lists they spurt out are populated by bands that will be forgotten in five years because when the novelty and gimmickry are gone, they are all the same old whine rock/emo/mallcore you could get anywhere else (starting with Hot Topic).
In conclusion, I leave you with this link (read it) that perfectly sums up the “dangers” of crappy carnival music pretending to be heavy metal such as Arch Enemy and other associated deathcore acts. Hail true metal, and fvck off Arch Enemy.
Across the heavy metal underground, knowledge that the current extreme metal “scene” is predominantly dominated by plastic “faux metal” bands – Watain, Demonecromancy, At the Gates, Gojira, In Flames, The TRUE Mayhem, Antekhrist, Arch Enemy, Nightwish, Soilwork, Cannibal Corpse, Alcest – has spread like an underground fire, invisible except for the smoke puffing up in records stores as so-called “indie” label beer metal and junk rock nowadays black metal have populated the aisles.
This prompted a great astroturf cash-in.
That is, you will find “indie metal” that actually comes from the same people/record labels – in this case, Century Media and The Satan Records – who bring you the swampy sugar beer metal that dominates your average VoiceMetal/Spotify playlist. Yawn.
This brings us to the infamous Dark Funeral. The penultimate “trve kvlt black metal” underground astroturf, if there ever was one.
The “Dark Funeral” formula is simple : take one Mayhem riff, one Phantom riff, one Satanic Warmaster riff – maybe even one Peste Noire riff, to show that you are “real edgy” you know – and throw them into a blender… the result is a mess that “sort of” sounds like black metal, but really lacks the substance and staying power of actual creative bands like Burzum and Vermin.
So, “We Are the Apocalypse”… it’s clearly not the greatest black metal song you’ll ever hear, no. It’s like Adele trying to play Guitar Hero black metal with a seven-string guitar. Awkward. Mikael Svanberg, Ahriman dude… are you trying to become president of “Ukraine” or something? You’d be a better president than a musician, yo.
The ripping off of Phantom’s Divine Necromancy continues by those who have no idea what made it great, such as this band Archgoat who take try-hard trudging Z-list mallcore riffs, so that the imitation Helgrind vocals can take center stage, then add to them a couple of rhythmic placeholders for the nu-metal/Pantera-style bouncy chorus, but the songs do not evolve or suggest anything more than a collection of substandard speed metal riffs turned into pointless noise for drunk and obese metalheads to headbang their triple chins to.
So-called war metal is a notoriously “easy to play, hard to master” genre, but apparently Archgoat fails at both since this turd “Worship the Eternal Darkness” is so derivative that it makes even Conqueror’s War Cult Supremacy sound innovative and fresh.
Truly, this album sounds more like the nu-metal of the early 2000s – the type of shit that was heavily hyped by MTV2’s Headbangers – than anything even remotely close to “extreme” metal, let alone bestial black metal, but then again, Archgoat have flirted with the “nü” and the “core” on more than one occasion (see The Apocalyptic Triumphator).
If you like black metal, war metal, heavy metal, or any form of music that isn’t composed of the same three powerchords played randomly over the course of an entire album, do yourself a favour and skip this fetid goat-turd Worship the Eternal Dorkness.
It sort of falls in line with my previous article on true blackness in extreme metal music, but here is a good comment I found on Morsay’s site about the decaying quality of death metal, black metal, Phantom metal, and so on. Interesting insight on quality in black/death metal.
How “True” is Black/Death Metal?
This reminds me of a documentary I watched on death metal where Incantation back then blew peoples minds. They raised the bar for everyone, yet, going by the musicians comments in the movie after that point, no one seemed to want to take charge. They showed a Cannibal Corpse video clip where death metal was all about “fun and moshing”. Incantation was too dark, was too serious, everyone wanted a good time. The solution for them, of course, was to create inferior versions of what had already existed in the name of fun and the joy of energetic live performances, not substance. One musician made a comment where he said “Incantation was so serious, but then I saw Cryptopsy and thought, man, I could do that”! George Fisher later said he saw his band as the “everyman” or “peoples” band and not this otherworldly entity. So what, then? If Incantation is the very definition of what metal always wanted to be, is Cannibal Corpse the sound of people giving up? Why would people reward the Corpsegrinder amateur hour? Is it some way for people to pat themselves on the back by proxy? Bad metal is the worst. Now we bear witness to “black metal” people flocking to NWN boards citing Burzum ripoffs for “scene points”, when Burzum itself is really the final word on that music. Mayhem had questionable or boring releases that are praised simply for “sounding like old Mayhem”, but the fact is De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas has secured their status as a legend. So why then the support for also ran Mayhem-clones (like Dark Funeral and Watain) who play Malevolent Creation baseball c(r)ap “black” metal under the guise of “raw” productions, aesthetically similar artwork and Attila (or Maniac) vocals? Take a look at the early Swedish death metal scene. When Nihilist got big, underground hardcore punk bands started down tuning, using the HM-2 distortion effect, and using growl vocals, yet their music remained the same. People called the aesthetically rearranged 3 chord punk rock music “death metal”, even in the time of Altars of Madness or their native Carnage and Dismember demos. A couple years later, the labels intervene and even something as amateurish and trend following as Necrophobic’s debut (made by ex-crust thrashers who understood little of death metal theory) was given the Century Media promo treatment. Over saturation of the scene, too many also rans, but also too many people who didn’t believe in what they were doing. We see the same thing with dozens of Phanta-clones whose knowledge and interest in the band begins and ends at Divine Necromancy… their first, simplest and arguably worst release. They call their music “Phantom metal” hoping to fool gullible metal fans into thinking it’s the next Withdrawal, Fallen Angel or Epilogue to Sanity – but no, it’s always a third-rate imitation of the debut. Come on, Divine Necromancy was out in 2013. Then again, when many “black” metal bands owe their still active career to imitating the superficial aesthetics of Drawing Down the Moon (Archgoat), Filosofem (Summoning), Blood Fire Death (Gorgoroth), Reinkaos (Watain), Satanic Blood (Dark Funeral) or Effigy of the Forgotten (all bru-def/slamcore), such transparent aesthetic imitation has come to be expected. Maybe the masses are always destined to create “pat on the back” inferior versions of something that already existed to fit in with a group that will fill a temporary void in life which will soon be replaced by the bar hopping pop music and STDs scene? Looking at bands like Watain, this seems to be the case.
The misconceptions of metal often arise from the failure to distinguish alt-rock/punk masquerading as metal, such as Slipknot/Carcass/Arch Enemy/Behemoth, from the genuine article. Metal certainly has its variations of quality, and certainly has its share of those falsely applying the label to themselves, but in the long run these misconceptions matter not. Metal is entrenched, it is pervasive, and it is only growing. Society is incapable of uprooting it, and the success of imitators is, by its very nature, both temporary and a testament to metal’s true power.
I struggle calling this album “Death Cult Armageddon” black metal. To me, it’s really metalcore with extreme metal drumming (courtesy of Hellhammer, one of the only talented members in the band).
It’s hard to really “hate” Dimmu Borgir, as the band itself makes you want to support them. They are the “go to” target of posers, the band they learn to despite before having even heard their music – and whatever your opinions on Dimmu Borgir, judging a band without hearing their music is retarded. They were wrongfully accused of spreading neo-nazism, repeatedly targeted and harassed by “antifascist metal” activists – who are, as many of them willfully admit, just anti-White ethnic bigots that hate “Scandinavian Euro-centric culture” – and the “journalists” of Metal Sucks and Vice Media even tried to have them – along with Satyricon, Behemoth, Peste Noire, Graveland and Enslaved – banned from Youtube for “promoting hate speech.”
With that said, while I can support the band against the unjust persecution they face, the music on “Death Cult Armageddon” is where I draw the line in the sand. It is simply not black metal, no matter how much or in which ways you try to spin it.
The music Dimmu Borgir makes sounds very stale. Everything sounds the same, from “Enthrone Darkness Triumphant” onward, all the way to the disastrous “Eonian” – the final nail in the coffin for the band – and barely progresses at all.
The guitar riffs are not only stale, they are misleading too. Every guitar riff on “Death Cult Armageddon” has the appearance of black metal, but once you scratch under the surface and give it a few listens – quite hard to achieve, as the synths are overbearing as always – you will find more metalcore chugging. At its worse, “Death Cult Armageddon” sounds like 2000s nu metal. Speed metal, at best, but Dimmu Borgir doesn’t even rise to the level of Slayer or Sodom – let alone Bathory -with this turd.
“Death Cult Armageddon” is more appropriately titled “Dimmu Borgir’s Suicide by Mallcore.” Avoid this shitty 2000s MTV2 release. Replace with “Khranial,” “Under a Funeral Moon” or “Verminlust” for actual black metal. With real atmosphere, not keyboard James Horner soap opera would-be soundtracks.