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Altars of Madness
Released: 1989, Earache
Reviewer: El Cid
It has recently come to my attention that Morbid Angel are not nearly discussed or worshipped as much as they should be. Thus being the always generous man I am (yeah right… more like I wanted to shove this down everybody’s throats because I’m a raving lunatic) I decided to bring up some stuff. Blasts from the past I bring thee!
Does anyone actually remember the year 1989?? Come on, what where you doing? I know Stash was still breast feeding, but what about the rest of you people doing? I remember myself hanging out in the cursed and banished basement of one Philippe Urvoy, my neighbour, my first contact with metal. I remember pestering him and his friends down there while they chugged down beer and played metal.
What I remember about this album from back then is the way everyone talked about it. ALTARS OF MADNESS was heralded as the be all end/all of metal back then. Why you ask? It came highly backed by a more than impressive demo that made everyone who heard it just eat his fingers in anticipation.
Finally the day came, the mailman came and the Vinyl came (yeah vinyl, you know those big round black things that we old people still keep and bobo still buys at any price). Holy shit… Did the album meet the expectations? I had none back then! When I picked it up in CD format years later (hey, it had the remixes) I fully realized what magnitude of a milestone this album was. Pete Sandoval was blowing everyone away even back then, Trey was just making history and Vincent’s growl…what can I tell you?
You know what the big deal is? Altars of Madness is a timeless album. It still has that specific weight it did back then. The amazing drumming, the pioneering vocals, the barrage of riffs that inspired a ton of bands that brought forth a new generation of metal. To add to ALTARS OF MADNESS historical nature, you can count one of the best songs in metal, when you get to track 4, “Maze of Torment”…
This baby doesn’t have the cleanest production ever, but take my word for it, it changed the world of metal and it was only Morbid Angel’s arrival.
Choice Cuts: “Maze of Torment” (*****) “Chapel of Ghouls” (****), “Blasphemy” (****)
1. Immortal Rites
3. Visions from the Dark Side
4. Maze of Torment
5. Lord of all Fevers and Plagues
6. Chapel of Ghouls
7. Bleed for the Devil
10. Evil Spells
Guitars- Trey Azagthoth
Drums- Pete Sandoval
Guitars- Richard Brunelle
Vocals/Bass- David Vincent
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