Released: 2008, Roadrunner Records
Reviewer: Robert Williams
The Filthtastic foursome have been Shat Out Of Hell with their ninth full length album in tow. What would a Cradle of Filth album be without a long drawn out intro track? The world will never know, at least not yet. Godspeed, being a concept album detailing the life and times of 14th century serial killer Gilles de Rais (who many will remember also as the namesake behind Celtic Frost’s “Morbid Tales” era lead off track “Into the Crypts of Rays”)
Apparently longtime female vocalist Sara Jezabel Deva (Angtoria) didn’t prove sufficient by her lonesome on this outing and the band has employed Carolyn Gretton, who you will instantly pick out like a sore thumb on the album’s third track “The Death Of Love” While Sara JD will forever be instantly recognizable as both operatic and distinctly British in her spoken word passages, Carolyn sends my index finger toward the fast forward button with her distinctive "Ace of Base" reminiscent vocal approach and phrasing.
Not unlike past COF releases, Godspeed is tied together with many spoken word passages providing a sufficient atmosphere for the album’s dark storyline. Where previous albums like "Thornography" and "Damnation and a Day" showcased a more experimental Cradle, Godspeed is back to business as usual for the band of Brits and is pretty straight forward Cradle throughout it’s duration. Blast beats, high shrieks, low lows, spoken word both male and female (and child narration featuring the offspring of Dani himself, Luna Scarlet Davey) symphonic keys, buzzsaw guitars…this being the first Cradle I can remember having only one guitarist in Paul Allender.
If you like late nineties to early 21st century Cradle you will probably not be let down by Godspeed On The Devils Thunder. Having said that; it is worth noting that there is no boundary pushing to be found on this album, and that may not necessarily be a bad thing I suppose, this album just wreaks of the classic Cradle sound through and through (with the exception of the previously noted Ace of Base-esque back up vocals on track three).