Review : WATAIN – "Lawless Darkness"

Watain - Lawless Darkness
Release: 2010Jun07 (US)
Label: Season of Mist
Rating: 3.5/5

When I first heard of this band I wanted to dislike it. I grew up listening to lots of dark metal and hardcore, then got into black metal in the mid to late 90s. Besides a handful of the stranger new black metal bands—which I love—in the last 10 years, most of the traditional black metal I am in the mood for has been Bathory, Darkthrone, Celtic Frost, Dissection, etc. Maybe it was the right time, but when I heard Lawless Darkness it really brought me back to being a kid, sneaking around graveyards and churches and smoking enough weed till I felt possessed.

Watain‘s approach to black metal isn’t the most original, but the addition of classic metal, thrash, and goth really helps make Lawless Darkness a great album. I’m sure the black metal community has mixed feelings, and have a list of underground bands they feel are far better; but for my money, Watain bring 72 minutes of METAL and that’s all I care about. Honestly, keeping up with every subgenre of Metal is a difficult task for me, so it’s nice to hear relatively popular bands output quality product.

As an added bonus, Fields of Nephilim‘s Carl McCoy shows up on the 14+ minute “Waters of Ain” and goths it up in a brief vocal cameo (as a FoN fan, it makes me smile every time).  If you are looking for something purely new and innovative then you may want to keep digging, but if you want some solid death-obsessed black metal, then Lawless Darkness is for you.

01. Death’s Cold Dark
02. Malfeitor
03. Reaping Death
04. Four Thrones
05. Wolves Curse
06. Lawless Darkness
07. Total Funeral
08. Hymn to Qayin
09. Kiss of Death
10. Waters of Ain

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