Released: 2007, Regain Records
Reviewer: Luxi Lahtinen
Let the evil be spread ruthlessly again...Lord Belial, these Swedish melodic and fierce Black Metal warriors that started on No Fashion Records in 1995 with their debut album KISS THE GOAT, have reached another milestone in their respectable and long career. The band´s latest album, carrying the title REVELATION (THE 7TH SEAL), basically doesn´t introduce Lord Belial in any new light, but brings them even closer to the mission they have carried since their own light of dawn: To enslave all Christians and wipe them off from the face of the earth by their uncompromising Black Metal havoc. Eh, let´s take things a bit seriously again and just concentrate more on Lord Belial´s latest ´revelation´ rather than start digging up their philosophical ground any more accurately, ok?
In fact, when spinning REVELATION (THE 7TH SEAL) back and forth, it´s like you couldn´t resist the temptation to spit out this type of stuff that has been churned out millions of times before - and actually that´s a part of the truth, no matter how hard you try to cover up that cold fact. Dark Funeral, Dissection, Unanimated, Naglfar, Sacramentum, Necrophobic, Satanic Slaughter - and all those other melodic Black Metal bands from Sweden, share a similar style together, in one way or the other - and Lord Belial doesn´t make that big a difference to that rule either. To say, REVELATION (THE 7TH SEAL) sounds sinister, grim, occasionally upliftingly epic, even with dark and harmonious atmospheres, fits so many other Swedish-style Black Metal albums as well - just like the ones that were mentioned previously. Of course it may be a bit unfair and unreasonable to make comparisons between bands with a similar style, but since they all basically come from the same musical era (not to mention from the same country as well), it´s understandable that these comparisons are being made.
Lord Belial are, in fact, damn good at what they do - and I really love such songs as “7th Seal” and “Ancient Splendor” for what they are: Murky, melodic, well-crafted and catchy Swedish Black Metal churned out the way only the Swedish brothers of darkness and evil seem to do in their own sort of ´trademark-ish´ way. A song called “Death Cult Era” - on the other hand, reaches the sort of epicness stylistically that Immortal caught so well on their latest album thus far, SONS OF NORTHERN DARKNESS. The song is less than 4-minutes long, but it´s still epic as hell to the very core, and one of the better songs on REVELATION (THE 7TH SEAL) in my opinion, too.
There´s so many familiar elements involved on this album that hark back to the times when the Swedish label No Fashion Records did their best to sign the most melodic yet evil Swedish Black Metal bands that were crawling out from their dark and dusty catacombs back in the day. Lord Belial´s REVELATION (THE 7TH SEAL) reminds me exactly of that golden Swedish era, so if that´s something that made you paint your face black and white, and to burn a couple of churches here and there, then you cannot go wrong with Lord Belial’s newest opus either.