Necrophobic - Womb Of Lillithu
Season Of Mist
Blackened Death Metal
14 songs (68:31)
Release year: 2013
Necrophobic, Season Of Mist
Reviewed by Neill

Necrophobic was always some what of an "underground" band for me in an old school sense. I had heard some of their songs, but never found any of their albums in stores. I was never really into downloading music so I didn't get to hear them that way. The few chances I got to hear their music was special to me. It really felt like something I couldn't get anywhere else. Now, with the advances in YouTube, bandcamp, and even programs like Spotify, I can access their music in no time. That special feeling is sadly no longer there, but does the music itself still hit me the same way? Was this band just a case of "want what you can't have"? I was very excited to listen to the new album Womb of Lillithu and see exactly how new material from this band would hit me, and if I would still feel anything special from them.

Before we get into the music, I just have to bring up the situation with Frontman Tobais Sidegard. I'm sure anyone reading this knows that he is no longer in the band, and I won't go into the reason why, but I do agree with the bands decision to let him go. This album stands as the last vocal performance he will be providing for the band. Regardless of how I feel about the situation, I will not let that influence my review. I will be reviewing the music itself, and not what happens outside of the studio.

The first thing that I have to say about the album is the intro. I feel very hit or miss with intro tracks, and usually I feel they need to be kept short and have something special or really interesting to warrant being on a record. The intro on this album does not do that. It feels to damn long, and wholly unnecessary. That seems to be a thread of this album, but more on that later.

Once the album kicks in, it is a pretty standard blackened death metal album. The musicianship is very tight, the guitars are very audible and bright, the bass thumps very well, and the drums provide a nice groove and catchy vide on the record most of the time. The vocals are well performed, sticking mostly to a mid range growl/shriek. There are some choir/operatic style vocals (male and female) sprinkled in the album, but never seeming out of place or detracting from the rest of the music. Going back to the drums, the album has a very nice groove/vibe to it. The album allows the listener to headbang along, at a decent pace and not break their neck doing so. My personal highlight of the album are the kick ass guitar solos. In a lot of places, these can save a song from being totally bland and forgettable. Also, the album artwork is just beautiful to me. I love the dark feeling it provides, and really fits well with the music on the record.

Despite very solid musicianship, the album itself feels too long, and very bland in most cases. Everything mostly sounds the same. I'm not asking for ridiculous amounts of experimentation or avante garde work, but I would be hoping for a little more variety. Most of the tracks on the album are interchangeable and actual track order seems pointless. Most times it feels like the same song on repeat (expect, again, for the solos). In fact, the first song that really grabbed me, and stood out at all was The Necromancer, which is the 6th track on the album. Almost halfway through and the first really good song comes in. Not a good sign. The melodic guitar lines work very well to me, and the choir style clean vocals fit very well. Further into the album, track 9, Marchosias also stands out. We finally get a little variety, as the song has a slower intro, before kicking in to the "normal" sound of the album. The vocals stand out as well as they are almost spoken word style in places, which is a nice addition, and helps the track sound a little different than the prior ones.

Continuing this pattern, track 10, Matanbuchus while being a fairly standard track on the album, features what I would consider my favorite lead on the album. Very expertly done, and, again, really helps save an other bland song. The album retains its standard sound for the rest of the album, until we get into the final track, Amdusias which hits it out of the park. The song is really just an outro, mostly instrumental except for a few male and female choir singing in the background. The song itself features beautiful piano and keayboard playing, and is a much needed change to this album, and I am sad it came in as the final song. Eventually the other instruments kick in, but it retains a melodic sound, and never gets into the heavy realm. The piano and keys continue in the background as well throughout the track. This is easily the most interesting and "different" track the album has to offer, and, honestly my favorite track on the record.

Maybe a lot of this is just me. It seems, personally, that over the last few years, the mystique of extreme metal has worn off, at least of this style. I tend to appreciate bands putting forth a little something different (like the new An Autumn For Crippled Children) or at least making something really interesting and stand out in their chosen genre. The "typical" sound of music like this has to offer something very, very different for me to really pay attention.

If I had to sum up the album very quickly I suppose I would say this: Very well played. Tight musicianship by a group of guys who know what they are doing. However, restraint is not their strong suit on the record. A few songs could have been cut, and the songs themselves could be shorter. The main problem with the record is that it's too damn long, and not varied enough to keep it interesting for nearly 70 minutes. Feel free to take a listen to the album At the band's bandcamp page.

Killing Songs :
Amdusias, Matanbuchus, Marchosias, The Necromancer
Neill quoted 70 / 100
Other albums by Necrophobic that we have reviewed:
Necrophobic - Dawn of the Damned reviewed by Goat and quoted 80 / 100
Necrophobic - Mark of the Necrogram reviewed by Goat and quoted 85 / 100
Necrophobic - Death to All reviewed by Alex and quoted 75 / 100
Necrophobic - Hrimthursum reviewed by Alex and quoted 87 / 100
Necrophobic - Bloodhymns reviewed by Jack and quoted 75 / 100
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