NECROPHOBIC prove that, as one of the proud remaining godfathers of Swedish black/death metal, they can always be relied on to create excellent albums. The bottom line is that Mark of the Necrogram is the perfect NECROPHOBIC album.
All the hallmarks that the band has built their legacy can be found: the undeniable dark atmosphere, the melancholic melodies, the variety of songs, and the heartpounding tempos. The greatest intangible that NECROPHOBIC bring to the table is that magic feeling, that mystery of their unique style of Swedish black/death metal. You would think that a band that started in ’89 would’ve lost what made them special at some point along the way. However, that is simply not the case with them.
The album opener/title track sets the tone beautifully with its unstoppable melodies and plowing momentum. “Tsar Bomba” just has that special feeling that you can feel in your soul. It’s quite a great anthem. “Lamashtu” is perfect for a live setting with its momentum building and catchy vocal lines. One listen to “Sacrosant” and you’ll be singing along to the chorus. The middle section and excellent guitar solo by Sebastian Ramstedt in “Requiem for a Dying Sun” is pure magic. NECROPHOBIC race to the finish with “From the Great Above to the Great Below” with a strong sense of urgency before smoldering into ashes with the instrumental “UndergÜngen.”
Mark of the Necrogram features strong performances from all band member but it should be pointed out that band leader/drummer Joakim Sterner is the heart and soul of NECROPHOBIC. Additionally, his drumming is basically the playbook when it comes to this style of extreme metal.
Look, Mark of the Necrogram is yet another classic NECROPHOBIC album and another mandatory addition to your record collection. Hail. (Century Media Records)