Released: 2004, Dynamic Arts Records/Sound Pollution
Reviewer: Anders Sandvall
Calvarium is a new Finnish band formed by Veilroth (Alghazanth, Behexen) and Lord Sargofagian (Satanic Warmaster, Baptism, Valonsurma, Trotzreich). Veilroth plays guitar and Lord Sargofagian drums, with Molestor Kadotus handling vocal duties. Calvarium is label themselves as a tribute to all old school black metal bands. Though they formed in the new millineum, they try to make riffs and the song structures that sound straight from the mid 90’s.
At the beginning of 2002 joined Molestor Kadotus the band as singer and lyric writer. Calvarium recorded five songs in Studio Lutakko resulting in their current label showing interest and signing them. For some reason they had to change studios and recorded the three remaining songs in Studio Perkele where they also mixed the songs. There are nine songs on this THE SKULL OF GOLGOTHA and as you can see from the song titles they are all typical black metal songs and lyrics.
The biographical note says that Calvarium play old school black metal, but I think they lean more towards atmospheric black metal. It sounds like they use keyboards and the tempo in the songs is not always ultra-fast, there are a lot of slower parts also. So I don’t think there’s any remotely old school black metal in this. The only things that can be referred to as old school is, as I mentioned before, the song structures and, in some parts, the singer’s vocal style. In some places you can actually hear what he sings and that’s NOT old school black metal. In other words, Calvarium is atmospheric black metal from the 21st century with a standard production and nothing more.
Calvarium don’t do anything for me. There are quite a few bands that sound like they do today. This Finnish band is nothing out of the ordinary and instead of buying this you should spend your money on older black metal bands like Venom or the newer Norwegian band Ragnarok.