GORGOROTH are no strangers to controversy as banned shows, sheep heads, blood, beatings, and prison sentences follow the bands’ history, and Live in Grieghallen continues that tradition. Frontman Gaahl recently stirred up some news by announcing his sexual attraction towards men, but more importantly, the large controversy surrounds this “live” album. Live in Grieghallen is not a live show, so prepare to be disappointed if you were led to believe that – it is a live studio album. The second part of the GORGOROTH controversy is the well documented feud between the Infernus-fronted version and the Gaahl/King ov Hell-fronted version. Due to legal issues, Regain Records has been forced to halt promotion and distribution for this album, and could be quite difficult to get your hands on. However, the music on this disc is still for the die-hard GORGOROTH fan.
Almost all live albums sound weak and obviously lack the power and energy of studio albums, but Live in Grieghallen sounds clear and raw at the same time, probably due to the fact that it was recorded live in the studio, as Infernus handled all guitar and bass duties. Make no mistake, this is a “live” studio album, as there is no way Infernus could have handled guitar and bass at the same time, unless he had extra limbs. Nothing is said in between songs, and this album is just a slab of raw metal from start to finish.
The songs chosen for this album are quite excellent, however, ranging from “Destroyer,” “Possessed (by Satan),” and of course, “Unchain My Heart!!!” Gaahl‘s “singing” can be quite laughable on “Profetens Apenbaring“, but his overall maniacal screeching is what appeals to all the rabid GORGOROTH fans worldwide. Keeping in tradition with other short GORGOROTH albums, this album only has eight songs, and breezes by quickly, as it is only 31 minutes long. Live in Grieghallen is probably better off for hardcore GORGOROTH fans, rather than the casual DIMMU BORGIR diet-Black Metal fan, as the casual Black Metal fan would probably run from GORGOROTH anyway. (Regain Records)