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On disc: Ov Hell

The Underworld Regime - Mike Thompson - 7 stars

The Underworld Regime

The Underworld Regime
(Indie Recordings - 2010)

I didn't pay a lot of attention to the Gorgoroth break-up and ensuing court case so it was little surprise for me to learn that Gaahl had quit God Seed after only two shows leading to the formation of this 'supergroup'.
Ov Hell features the talents of ex-Gorgoroth bassist, King, and Dimmu Borgir vocalist Shagrath. They are joined by the legendary Frost (Satyricon, 1349), Ice Dale (Enslaved) and Teloch (also ex-Gorgoroth). With such a line-up of renowned titans of black metal you would expect an album of truly epic proportions. Unfortunately in this sense The Underworld Regime is completely underwhelming.
Now don't get me wrong, I enjoyed this album, however it does absolutely nothing new and none of the songs really stick in your mind. What it sounds most like is Gorgoroth's Ad Majorem Sathanas Gloriam, part two. A lot of the riffs and song structures are lifted from that album, the only real difference being Shagrath's vocals.
Instrumentally the album is fine. Shagrath's growl is in fine fettle and its nice to hear him sing in a purely black metal band. Frost's drumming is tight, although not his most jaw-dropping performance. Ice Dale and Teloch's guitars have enough bite and they produce some good riffs. King's bass is, well, good when you can distinguish it!
The songs on the album are good, solid black metal. The only thing is that you've heard it all before. The Underworld Regime is unfortunately not as good as the sum of its parts would suggest. That being said its still worth a listen. I enjoyed it and didn't feel like skipping any tracks. If you enjoyed the last couple of pre-split Gorgoroth albums you should enjoy this immensely. If you are one of those trve kvlt black metal fans then this will be a little too light for you so give it a miss and go listen to Peste Noire or something.

7 stars

Mike Thompson


           2008-2010 by Claudia Ehrhardt • E-Mail:

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