Lord Belial - Revelation
Regain Records
Melodic Black Metal
11 songs (42'22")
Release year: 2007
Lord Belial, Regain Records
Reviewed by Alex

Lord Belial belongs to the group of bands which can be described in terms similar to my soccer game. Far from possessing star power I would like to think of myself as fundamentally sound and very workmanlike. While not the greatest player on the field my teammates generally enjoy having me on their side. What happens then if, in metal, we have a band which adheres to the tenets of a style and puts out solid, but not groundbreaking, releases? You get Revelation, the seventh full-length from Swedish blasphemers Lord Belial, a band who certainly is productive, but little known outside perhaps their own cult following thus toiling in relative obscurity.

If some Swedish band never released Storm of the Light’s Bane Lord Belial would have had a field day, but as black metal world exists today what is presented on Revelation has been introduced before. Cold Dissectionish melodies, sacrilegious lyrics, some of it sung quite legibly by Thomas Backelin with his dry cackling voice, trusted melancholic tremolo riffing, oft-blasting, competent throbbing leads – the elements are all familiar. Lord Belial has its own witching hour moments, when their frigid approach reaches into warm territory (perhaps via hypothermia) on Death as Soultion and Unspoken Veneration. They are not afraid of slowing down to rock out a bit (Aghast), or go with cubic death riffs, marrying I and Dissection into unholy matrimony on Unholy War, pun intended.

Things are definitely not stale on Revelation, where more evil/borderline cheesy riffs (take your pick) of Vile Intervension co-exist with what I can only call a blackened power ballad of Gateway to Oblivion. Lord Belial is definitely secure enough with the craft and their crowd to be experimenting a little away from the blackened death metal. In the end, though, from the opening cutting guitars of Ancient Splendor to the rain’n’gloom outro of Grievance, Revelation is a very acceptable superbly melodic piece vanquishing many all-out blast Norsecore minions. If you want more hate and spewing venom from your Dissection worshippers take a look at Profundi or Setherial, but if more melodic side suits your palate Lord Belial takes the cake.

The band’s trouble may be that climbing from under the proverbial “2nd tier” label may not be feasible, no matter my private sympathies. When I hear the touch of sorrow amidst the Northern landscape, as in Death Cult Era, I am thinking of many underrated bands like Lothlorien and Auberon who never got their due. The kvltists would scorn Revelation as not “troo” enough, and they, unfortunately, have the power to make this stick. So, while reporting to you the view on Revelation as I see it, I would reserve a soft spot for this album somewhere deep inside, to throw a track or two on a compilation for a friend who is less of a purist. My only complaint is the lack of power in the production. It seems that the band is really satisfied with the job Andy LaRoque (King Diamond) does for them at Los Angered Studios, since they are going there time and time again. The drums do not need to be sterile punched up pieces of plastic (see Dimmu Borgir), but I would still prefer to hear more bottom end on Revelation.

Killing Songs :
Unspoken Veneration, Death Cult Era, Unholy War, Black Wings of Death
Alex quoted 79 / 100
Other albums by Lord Belial that we have reviewed:
Lord Belial - The Black Curse reviewed by Alex and quoted 82 / 100
Lord Belial - The Seal Of Belial reviewed by Jack and quoted 90 / 100
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