Album: Revenge of the Horned One, Part One
Label: Barbarian Wrath
Release Year: 2001
I respect few Black Metal bands more than Countess. This is a band that has a long history of near-perfect metal under it's belt, and last year's "The Shining Swords of Hate" has become one of my favorite albums of all time. I was quite curious to see what paths Countess would tread next - was this going to be more like Countess' older albums, or more like "Shining Swords..."?
Amazingly, Orlok has managed to blend the two styles to create something truly impressive. A lot of people didn't like the vocals on "Shining Swords...", and they will be happy to know that the vocal style here is closer to older Countess. However, the wonderfully thick, nasty, and repetitive guitar style of that album has been retained and integrated into shorter songs here. The result is a near-seamless combination of the strongest features of both early Countess and "The Shining Swords of Hate".
All in all, this is a flawless slab of Countess' own Orthodox Black Metal. Any fan of the band should get this immediately, and those who haven't discovered Countess yet have no excuse to miss it. I eagerly await the second part of this masterpiece.
Standout Tracks: "A Battle in Darkness", "Hymn to the Gods of Yore", "Triumph of Metal", "On Earth as it is in Hell"