CHORONZON — Magog Agog (review)

CHORONZON — Magog Agog album cover Album · 1998 · Black Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
2.5/5 ·
Vim Fuego
Choronzon is not a well-known name even in black metal circles, but that's hardly surprising. The one man band, created by P. Emerson Williams in 1986, was originally intended as a project to be heard by occult initiates. There is somewhat of an air of mystery surrounding Choronzon, deepened by the disappearance of what was supposed to be the first album 'A Paean To Lilith'. In the absence of that release, 'Magog Agog' became the debut.

The album starts with a dreamy electronic introduction, which doesn't sound anything too special, but eases the listener in to the album.

"Love, Strength; Lies" is fairly standard electro-black metal, with a simple synth beat behind a reedy guitar and a harsh, hissed vocal for the main part. There is also a second vocal track with more of a gothic feel to it. The guitars have a 'Filosofem'-era Burzum feel about them, but the riffs are more complex. The overall effect is something like the Sisters Of Mercy with bollocks.

"Perdurabo (Magog Agog)" changes the atmosphere and tempo completely, dominated by jackhammer, static drenched drums punctuated by blast beats and subsonic booms. Over this, Williams sings like Tom G. Warrior with his mouth full. It segues seamlessly into "Under The Leaves". Eerie electronic drones and scrapes intermesh the track, along with an unsteady heart beat and some laboured breathing, and it fades to nothingness.

"Crimson Awakening" is a far more traditional metal song, more thrash than anything, with snappy double kick drums and a lively beat. A demonic voice composed of white noise breaks the rhythm, followed by another thrash passage, then back to the screaming demon again. The whole dynamic of the song, the vocal melody, the traditional metal solos and the unexpected electronic elements hint at Morbid Angel at their strangest, or perhaps Emperor with a drum machine.

A criticism of the entire album is that it is highly repetitive, but as this is intended to be an album of ritual music, it is not really an issue. It is quite possible to imagine occult rites and ceremonies being performed to strains of this album.
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