The first few tracks of Eulogy IV present some of the best black metal youíll hear all year: unusual melodic elements and riffs make their way amongst more traditional black metal elements that are outstanding in their own right. The rasp and powerful vocals are thoroughly satisfying, the inclusion of guitar solos do nothing but propel the musicís interest, and the production marries the raw with the coherent. But perhaps the biggest success is how much the songs rock as well as chill. Black metal framework to be sure, but the music is arranged in a fashion that makes them on a song level appealing with driving grooves and engaging riffs.
From there, itís a gradual slope downhill in quality, and suddenly you notice that Eulogy IV is a bit of a "this Ďní that" album. The tracks after #5 donít have the same freshness of content or presentation. Alright, itís still okaaay, but... Indeed, the songs seem to have been taken from three or so very different sessions, with the album being rounded out by a not terribly good sounding live track. Closer inspection shows that the blander tracks are all covers (of Earth, Burzum and Von). It would have been much more worthwhile had the album been a full-length of original material recorded during the same time period with perhaps some bonus stuff at the end, as it would have made for a far more satisfying experience than half proper album and half bonus material. Should Nachmystium create this opus, it would stand as a remarkable accomplishment not only in todayís increasingly pointless black metal scene, but indeed in the genreís entire history. As it is, Eulogy IV is an incredible album dragged down by songs from the grab bag. Regardless, its plusses are strong enough that black metal fans would still do well to get it. (7/10)
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