DARKTHRONE — The Underground Resistance (review)

DARKTHRONE — The Underground Resistance album cover Album · 2013 · Heavy Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
4/5 ·
"The Underground Resistance" is the 16th full-length studio album by Norwegian metal act Darkthrone. The album was released through Peaceville Records in February 2013. Darkthrone have ventured into quite a few different mostly extreme metal territories in their career starting in death metal, then quickly moving into black metal and then on their last couple of releases visiting crust punk, traditional heavy metal and speed/thrash metal territories. They´ve lost a few fans along the way on that account but they´ve probably won just as many as a result of the neverending development and refinement of their sound. They´ve always stayed true to what they wanted to do at any given time, and despite not all their releases reaching the heights of their most essential albums, their intense passion for playing and writing music have always been audible.

"The Underground Resistance" is no different in that respect. The delivery is passionate, intense, raw and organic. Raw and organic are also words that can be used to describe the sound production. It´s a very well produced album though and all details are audible in the mix. So don´t expect this to sound lo-fi in any way.

"The Underground Resistance" features six tracks and a full playing time of 41:41 minutes. Three of the tracks are sung and mainly written by Nocturno Culto (Vocals, Guitars, Bass) and three of the tracks are sung and mainly written by Gylve Fenriz "Kaptein Vom" Nagell (Drums, Vocals, Bass (track 4), Guitars (solo on track 2)). Nocturno Culto´s tracks are generally the most harsh, black and crust influenced while Fenriz tracks are more speed/traditional heavy metal influenced. That´s only overall though as all tracks feature traits from different styles. While there are differences in style between the tracks, they work well together to form at consistent album with a good flow. It´s great to hear how well aggressive tracks like "Dead Early" and "Lesser Men" work with the Epic "Valkyrie" or the 13:49 minutes long Mercyful Fate influenced "Leave No Cross Unturned". The latter features Fenriz doing a convincing King Diamond vocal impersonation. The vocals on the album vary between harsh raspy vocals and "clean" higher pitched singing.

"The Underground Resistance" reeks of the involved parties love for early- to mid eighties heavy metal, and while the album sounds retro to the bone, the songwriting, the sound production and the delivery keep it fresh sounding and relevant. A great album that should please fans of the more raw heavy/thrash/speed metal releases from the early- to mid eighties. A 4 star (80%) rating is deserved.
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