Released: 2002, Metal Blade Records
Reviewer: Luxi Lahtinen
Polish Death Metal pioneers Vader´s 5th full-lenght studio album in order (I assume) titled LITANY, metaphorically speaking, threw me against a concrete wall by its over 30-minute deathly metallic tornado. Truly giving us a lesson of how to make highly enjoyable Death Metal by using some (a bit Slayer´ish, perhaps…?) Thrash Metal elements in a well-balanced measure in their own rather distinctive and well recognized sound. Basically proving us clearly that these Polish maestos of bone-breaking and flesh-ripping Death Metal have succeeded in gaining a large fan base for themselves around the globe for their determinedly hard work in the underground Death Metal circles. Now it´s truly started to pay off for them.
Much to my surprise, however, their newest effort REVELATIONS unfortunately isn't that tightly a churned out package of evil and brutal Death Metal tunes as the guysì previous effort LITANY was. It of course has its great savage and merciless moments as you can always expect from these Polish pioneers of a solid Death Metal. But it sounds too much like on REVELATIONS they are less hungry for your blood and not prepared for a serious fight against the rest fellow competitors in this very genre. They have slowed down quite drastically indeed; some of their typical magical speed that they had on LITANY, has been wiped away and been replaced by more chunky and downright heavy riffs instead. The 1st two songs, “Epitaph” (the 1st one minute of the song is indeed a pretty clear reminiscent of some new Slayer stuff without a doubt!) and “The Nomad” are the albumìs slowest and heaviest, non-typical Vader songs – and somehow I wasn´t too impressed by any of them. Maybe I just wasn´t prepared for this slow stuff (by Vaderìs standards, may I add…) from this bunch, I really donìt know. However, the 3rd song off the album, titled “Wolftribe” brings back that furious and overly aggressive Vader of which we all like and love; the true Vader sound with its sharp, flesh-cutting riffs and Doc´s hyper-active and maniac drum parts with a few occasional slower sections put in places here and there – just those elements what I love in this excellent band. “Whisper” obviously is every speed freak´s brutally marvelous wet dream as well, spiced with Peterìs Kerry-King-school guitar solos and happens to belong to my personal favorite songs on REVELATIONS. Not far from that comes a song called “When Darkness Calls” that basically amazes me by its killer yet creeping riffs, having again some traces to Slayer´s material especially in the riff department. It continues basically right from there where the previous song left off – speeding up towards the end a fine way and definitely kicking a major ass… hard! What a great fuckin´ song indeed!!
“Torch of War” could have fitted to the content of their LITANY album very well. It starts off with a fast and intense part, but leads toward a bit slower tempo, hypnotical part in the middle of the song until breaking through some sonic barriers and speed limits once again. The 7th song, “The Code” is again more of a mid-tempo song with its kind of oddly rockin´ atmosphere, the main riff being somewhat simple, but still nicely catchy enough in my opinion with Peter´s tiny ´kerryking-ish´ worshipping again as far as some restlessly yummy solos go.
“Lukewarm Race” nails the album back to that classic Vader stuff whereas the last song, “Revelation of Black Moses” recalls me of some great moments that this deadly bunch is capable of churning out when they concentrate on being murderously slow and lethally heavy, having occasionally a bit MorbidAngelish feel to it - thanks to some straight hints to albums like BLESSED ARE THE SICK and GATEWAYS TO ANNIHILATION, I guess.
My promotional version of REVELATIONS also has three extra candies available, too (“Reign Forever World”, “Frozen Paths” and “Privilege of the G…”)- and as funny as it may sound to some of you, these ´bonuses´ serve the most enjoyable dinner on the album; this gotta be the flesh on the bones on this particular album, reminding me of LITANY´s razor-sharp, scarily furious and thrashy atmospheres in several different parts. Wish they could have concentrated to keeping a tempo a bit faster on this album in order to make REVELATIONS a good enough match to their brilliant LITANY album. But overall, I bet many of you devoted Vader –fans will surely like REVELATIONS pretty much as well, so go ahead and head your steps to your local record shops and insist from a record store owner on the other side of the desk to dig the album up for you from somewhere. Also, tell him/her that Luxi from Metal-Rules.com warmly recommended it to you - thanks! ;=)