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Review by Krys on April 30, 2003.
Throughout Marduk's career one thing was always certain. With each album that they've produced, they've pounded our brains with hate-filled blistering assaults, improving their black metal craft each time. While some albums were slightly below their standards, most of Marduk's work pushed the black metal genre into higher levels and ultimately made them one of the more important acts in the metal scene. Their latest creation, "World Funeral," – which is already their 8th opus – puts forth an immense dose of ultra-violent aggression with devastating blast-beats, and a newfound diversity that is stronger than ever.
After their previous release, the somewhat slower and more monotone "La Grande Danse Macabre," Marduk returns to the relentless onslaught with World Funeral." However, speed is not the only thing that Marduk has to offer here. Almost every other song is divided by slow to mid-pace ones that don't take anything away from brutal atmosphere, but only add to heaviness and overall majestic feeling of the album. Even though 'Bleached Bones,' 'To The Death's Head True' and 'Castrum Doloris' are a couple of the songs that were taken back a few gears, those songs are no less powerful than the skull crushing opener opener 'With Satan and Victorious Weapons,' 'Cloven Hoof,' 'Hearse,' or 'Bloodletting'.
The whole album is built around very heavy and well structured riffing supported by a powerful rhythm section, courtesy of their new drummer Emil Dragutinovic. This man not only replaces the legendary molester of the skin, Fredrik Andersson, but does it in such a way that you won't even notice a change in musical skills. One thing that you will notice is something that has recently been getting lost in Marduk's camp – the enjoyment of playing. It might be combination of new blood in the band, perfect production and top-notch compositions, but "World Funeral" brings out elements that remind me of hungry and enthusiastic young musicians recording their first album, but this time with 12 years of stage experience and powerful but crystal clear production.
Bottom Line: If "World Funeral" is any indication of the current condition of the black metal scene, then contrary to many opinions, this genre stands as firm as it was in its golden days. Once again Marduk deliver a product of the highest quality that will desecrate your body and torment your soul until your very last breath. And that's just where the world funeral begins...
Categorical Rating Breakdown
Rating: 8.8 out of 10