CRADLE OF FILTH — Existence Is Futile (review)

CRADLE OF FILTH — Existence Is Futile album cover Album · 2021 · Symphonic Black Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
4.5/5 ·
Kev Rowland
There are few bands over the years who have generated so many as extreme reactions as Cradle of Filth, from being arrested by armed police at the Vatican in Rome for wearing ‘I Love Satan’ T-shirts in the Holy City to collaborating with Ed Sheeran, Dani has led this band through numerous line-up changes in their 30-year existence (and since the release of this album towards the end of last year there have been even more). He has always been at the heart of a metal beast which has its roots in black metal but over the years has embraced (darkly) many more styles, and here we find the band again bringing plenty of symphonic modes into their sound. Have they moved more towards Dimmu Borgir with this release, or vice versa? Discuss.

I loved their last album, 2017’s ‘Cryptoriana (The Seductiveness of Decay)’, yet there are moments on this album when they manage to exceed those lofty heights, with “Crawling King Chaos” being the perfect blend of Dani, black metal, symphonic and orchestral as it creates something dark and majestic. It is immediately obvious that this is a CoF album, and we are taken on a journey of styles and contrasts, with the instrumental “Here Comes a Candle... (Infernal Lullaby)” being both beautiful and totally at odds with the far more metallic “Black Smoke Curling from the Lips of War” which follows. This is one of the real delights of this album as one never knows where it is going to lead us, and Dani is the master manipulator ensuring he is always in total control. Although there have been some recent changes to the line-up, everyone else has been in the band since at least 2014, so one wonders if we are in for a period of stability, and possibly a more frequent release schedule?

They may not be loved by all metalheads, but no-one can deny they have stayed true to the course and 30 years on from ‘Invoking the Unclean’ they are as relevant and exciting as ever.
Share this review

Review Comments

Post a public comment below | Send private message to the reviewer
Please login to post a shout
No shouts posted yet. Be the first member to do so above!


Rating by members, ranked by custom algorithm
Albums with 30 ratings and more
Master of Puppets Thrash Metal
Buy this album from our partners
Paranoid Heavy Metal
Buy this album from our partners
Moving Pictures Hard Rock
Buy this album from our partners
Powerslave NWoBHM
Buy this album from our partners
Rising Heavy Metal
Buy this album from our partners

New Metal Artists

New Metal Releases

Total Atmospheric Black Metal
Buy this album from MMA partners
Vacancies Progressive Metal
Buy this album from MMA partners
An Altar In Mind Atmospheric Sludge Metal
Buy this album from MMA partners
Fractal Deathcore
Buy this album from MMA partners
Purging + Reinventing Metalcore
Buy this album from MMA partners
More new releases

New Metal Online Videos

More videos

New MMA Metal Forum Topics

More in the forums

New Site interactions


Latest Metal News


More in the forums

Social Media

Follow us