Genre : Black Metal
Country : Greece
Label : Self-released
Year : 2014
The ranks of Greek black metal are multitudinous and Lord Impaler stand well as one legit and respectable act in the scene. To celebrate their fifteen years of releases (1999-2014) they decided to put out The Serpent Seal EP, which actually contains re-recordings of their early stuff, including “Dying” from their 1999 self-titled demo, “Final Gates” and “Travel Through Abyss” from the Twilight Wonder demo and “Admire the Cosmos Black” from the 2005 promo.
Despite being active for so many years, they have only released one full length in 2011 and their last releases have been EPs and splits (featuring 2013’s notable Babylon Whore) so most of the fans should be eager to finally get a second full record. Naturally, the sound on The Serpent Seal is significantly improved, mastered by Tom Kvålsvoll during July and November 2014.
Lord Impaler has always played direct black metal with melodic riffs and influences from the northern scene and the Scandinavian bands. The polished production will please the ears of all their fans and the quality of the compositions is surely above average, showing how the band had the skills to write nice material from the start.
The band uses a real drummer this time (no drum machine anymore) and his effort is satisfying. There are some blast beat moments and they work perfectly with the tracks, making me wish it had more of that technique in record. The vocals are the regular shrieks while the guitar lines are the most interesting, featuring a lot of traditional, great riffs.
All in all, the tracks on The Serpent Seal have been revisited to an extent it’s awesome even as a new release and the whole package is more accessible and proffesional. Everyone into Greek black metal should not hesitate to go down on this and it surely serves well as an anniversary EP. Apart from that, Lord Impaler’s album Admire the Cosmos Black is also highly recommended, if you want to listen more from the band.