Regiment Ragnarok

Written by: MST on 04/04/2011 14:48:26

Following my reviews of the latest Illdisposed and Vanir albums, here comes my third review in a row of a release by a Danish band. According to the undersigned, Panzerchrist are the supreme rulers of the throne of Danish death metal, and have been since 2001's "Soul Collector". Since then they've injected a healthy dose of black metal to their sound and released "Room Service" and "Battalion Beast", both immensely brutal records that run you over with the force of ten heavily armoured tanks - each - whether you like it or not. The departure of Bo Summer on vocals and Reno Kiilerich on drums has scared some fans away, but with Magnus Jørgensen (Crocell) on vocals and Mads Lauridsen (Konkhra, The Cleansing) on drums, the tank is actually no less armoured than before.

There are numerous war sounds, like machine guns, artillery bombardments and tanks driving scattered across the record. Album opener "Prevail" features a long one as an intro that welcomes the listener to the battlefield. When the music starts, the concept is carried on: the drums kick in sounding like a hammering anti-vehicle machine gun. The band has found the perfect replacement for Reno Kiilerich in Lauridsen, as the drums are ridiculously fast, and in some songs they never really slow down. Jørgensen's screams are a lot like those of Bo Summer, but his growls aren't guttural like Summer's so fans of the band have to get used to the vocals. It's not that hard though, because the growls are good and fit the music well. The guitars continually weave one apocalyptic riff into the next, yet the riffs are actually very melodic at times, which is a nice contrast to the more or less constant carpet bombing-like brutality of the drums, like in "Ode to a Cluster Bomb" (best song title ever by the way) in which the drums pummel away endlessly, even when the guitars break out into melodic riffs. Another good example of what the album is would be "King Tiger" which starts out as a pummeling lunatic of a blackened death metal track. The drums are unrelentingly brutal and fast and the riffs only have time for blazing brutality. That is, until the melodic part of the song kicks in, with mellow melodic riffs that transform the raging battlefield into a post-battle mourning over dead bodies.

"Regiment Ragnarok" delivers what any Panzerchrist fan wants it to deliver: brutally blasting drums, blazing death and black metal riffs and vocals that add to the apocalyptic havoc caused by the aforementioned instruments. Sadly I find myself wishing that some of the best songs on the album (Prevail, King Tiger) and 1-minute blaster Time For The Elite were longer and the slower songs (Metal Tribes, Feuersturm) were a bit shorter as they tend to drag along a bit too much. But despite this tiny little detail, Panzerchrist's new album lives up to all of my expectations. Prepare to be crushed by the immense force of Panzer.


Download: Prevail, For The Iron Cross, Ode to a Cluster Bomb, King Tiger
For The Fans Of: God Dethroned, Behemoth, Fleshgod Apocalypse, Belphegor
Listen: Myspace

Release Date 18.04.11
Listenable Records

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