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Christ Agony – Black Blood [EP]

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New material from Polish finest, after 4 years. Forget Vader, forget early Behemoth, forget Graveland, forget any other Polish band. Christ Agony has made material which I consider as essential. I myself have a HUGE….no a HUGE…no think of something really HUGE….triple it, and you have my admiration for the albums “Daemoonseth Act II” and “Moonlight Act III”, of which the latter has an edge between them. I consider them both as one of the best Black Metal albums ever made. Part based on nostalgia, part based on uniqueness and as I called it myself: “Soundtracks of Pure Darkness”. The atmosphere is accessible on one hand, but also obscure as well. Granted, after both albums I was disappointed by the releases of main man Cezar which followed, as the uniqueness faded. Still he made songs with, for me, his trademark guitar sound and structures (just listen to the melody underneath “Dark Goddess” of the “Darkside” album. it’s a bit softer, but still stunning!), but I had to skip most of the tracks as they became more “could be from a dozen other bands”-tracks. But still, when Cezar & co. releases something new, it is a must hear for me, hoping for hear a glance of the majesty they once created. I think with “Black Blood” they made a nice mixture of “old” and “new” Christ Agony. They tried to grab the dark atmosphere and melodies of the 1990s and to mix it with the more up-tempo and bombastic and well-produced approach of the last albums. The second track “Coronation” has the mid-tempo melodies of “Act II” and “Act III” while “Kingdom ov Abyss” has the song structure and main riff of those two albums. As well as the ever-returning catchphrase “I’m coming back”. I do understand a musician is seeking for evolution on one or several points, yet I hope Cezar will check those iconic albums once again, just to hear what kind of unique writing talent he has in his fingers. But this “Black Blood” EP is a good start for sure! (Ricardo)