Behemoth - Evangelion
Nuclear Blast
Death Metal
8 songs (41:54)
Release year: 2009
Behemoth, Nuclear Blast
Reviewed by James
Album of the month

Unquestionably Poland's number one musical export, since their days as a pagan black metal band in the early 90s Behemoth have transformed into a muscular death metal act and, for that matter, one of the most popular death metal acts around today. They've always been a solid, dependable act, but save for Thelema.6 they've never really made that special album, the one that will be regarded as a classic in years to come. The Apostasy, while really cementing their profile worldwide, was probably the weakest album they've put out, laden with filler and not really possessing a classic song in the vein of a say, Conquer All or As Above So Below. So it's surprising, then, that Evangelion is as good as it is.

Although the Behemoth formula hasn't changed a bit, on Evangelion the band sound tighter and more powerful than they have in years. Part of this could be down to the band getting Colin Richardson on board behind the mixing desk. Although he works with some questionable bands, he certainly knows how to get the best sound possible out of them, and Evangelion is a massive step up from the oddly soggy sound of The Apostasy. Of course, all this would count for naught if Nergal's songwriting wasn't up to par, but this time he really does seem to have outdone himself. While filler is often a problem on Behemoth releases, this record comes charging out of the gate with Daimonos and simply doesn't let up until epic closer Lucifer. Nergal's writing is laser-focused here, Daimonos and lead single Ov Fire And The Void are the catchiest, most instantly likeable things he's penned to date. It's often Evangelion's slower, more grinding numbers that really shine, the likes of The Seed Ov I being stern, commanding slabs of pounding, doomy death metal. The faster paced tracks are still as exhilarating as ever, Daimonos in particular being a thrilling opener, propelled by a characteristically strong performance by sticksman Inferno. Indeed, all musicians featured turn in perhaps their strongest performance to date, and it's nice to actually be able to hear Orion's bass work for once. Nergal still has the same authoritarian roar, and this time out it sounds a little bit more natural, and less obviously digitally altered. His taste for the epic shines through, too, in the addition of a trumpet and a choir to the mix, creating a sense of end-of-days fury.

Considering the band had been progressively downhill ever since Zos Kia Cultus (although the albums that followed were far from weak), a record as strong as Evangelion is nothing less than a triumph. It'd be wrong to call it a comeback, as the band never really went away. But what Evangelion is, however, is a return to Behemoth at the height of their powers, a return to the death metal powerhouse they were at the beginning of the 21st Century. And this time out, it's been augmented by the tighter songcraft Nergal picked up during the Demigod era, resulting in one of the catchiest yet most crushing death metal blasts to have come out in recent years. In the past few years, Behemoth have risen to the title of leaders of modern death metal, along with Nile, and Evangelion is the record that proves why they deserve the crown.

Killing Songs :
All!
James quoted 92 / 100
Goat quoted 84 / 100
Other albums by Behemoth that we have reviewed:
Behemoth - The Satanist reviewed by Jared and quoted 70 / 100
Behemoth - ...From The Pagan Vastlands reviewed by Goat and quoted no quote
Behemoth - Satanica reviewed by Khelek and quoted 92 / 100
Behemoth - The Return Of The Northern Moon reviewed by James and quoted no quote
Behemoth - The Apostasy reviewed by Dylan and quoted 81 / 100
To see all 9 reviews click here
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