One of the most enticing aspects of Behemoth is their ability to produce a multifaceted artistic experience both musically, philosophically, visually and atmospherically. A continuation in obscurity between the boundaries of art and music, their newest album I Loved You at Your Darkest (ILYAYD) sates the appetite of those looking for more than just a blackened death metal album.
The intro “Solve” and Outro “Coagula” encase Behemoth’s newest Opus Dei in children’s chanting and a 17-piece Polish orchestra arranged by Jan Stoklosa, setting the scene for an infernal journey ahead. The arrangement then kicks up the brutal threshold with the wall of sound that is “Wolves ov Siberia”. Pair this with “Angelvs XIII” and you’ve got yourself a true nostalgic revisiting of the roots of what is primordial Behemoth sound.
A well thought out and harmonious balance is present throughout ILYAYD between the modern and original identity that is Behemoth. With songs like “We Are the Next 1000 Years” and the first released single “God = Dog”, their progression and refined idea of music that they wish to produce is evident. These songs escape the stereotypical metal type cast and push the boundaries of definable genres. This in turn breathes new life into to what we can expect of such a pioneering band in 2018.
Behemoth - God=Dog (Clean Version)
Staying true to their esoteric lyrical content, the fifth song of the album and recently released “Bartzabel” is the diamond in the rough. The Crowleyan inspired piece gives the powerful illusion of being a participant in the original 1910 Bartzabel evocation. Dark and moody guitars and direct lyrical content that mirrors the evocation with chants of “Come unto me, Bartzabel”, creates a real sense of foreboding mysticism. Slower than the previous songs, “Bartzabel” is a manifestation of ritualistic ambience and by far some of their best work to date.
On the whole, I Loved You at Your Darkest felt like a savage separation from religious political dogma, a dark night of the soul and then a rise from the ashes birthed by the vicious sound that is synonymous with Behemoth. Their ability to create albums that are not only thought provoking and artistic, but act as a check and balance on the separation between church and state defies all convention. An intellectualised flirtation between old and new sound, I Loved You at Your Darkest is a colossal addition to the Behemoth saga. As Behemoth’s sound and iconography continues to evolve in such a fascinating way, one can only speculate as to where they go from here. One thing can be certain however, their live shows will truly be a metamorphic experience.
Behemoth - 'I Loved You at Your Darkest' is out October 5 through EVP Recordings
Behemoth - Wolves ov Siberia (Official Video)