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Wolf's Lair Abyss

Mayhem Audio CD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • ASIN: B000003SF5
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Back from the dead 29 Dec 2005
By Jane Aland VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
With only the drummer surviving from the last line-up I guess any sort of release at all from Mayhem would have been an achievement, but Wolf’s Lair Abyss is an excellent and worthwhile mini-album. The band continue with the strangely languid style of guitar chords of De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas, but where that album really only had one insanely fast song (Buried by Time and Dust) here it’s blastbeats pretty much all the way, which makes this a ferocious release. Musically it’s difficult to fault this, as there are some great guitar lines here, but I’m not wholly convinced by the vocals of Maniac, with the drops into melodic chanting sounding rather weak to these ears. Still, a good brutal record.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brutal, evil, atmospheric: All Hail the True Mayhem 28 April 2001
Format:Audio CD
With Euronymous gone, and Varg incarcarated, one would think that the legend that is Mayhem would die. But with the release of 'Wolf Lair Abyss' Mayhem have returned as strong as ever, and more focused. While "True" fans of Mayhem might scoff at this release due to the loss of Euronymous, let me just say that Blasphemer is a considerably superior guitarist. I know this might upset some but it's true (just look at the guitar work on 'Grand Declaration...'). Also We still have Hellhammer on board and old school mayhem soldiers Maniac and Necro Butcher. Musically this album has the sheer brutality of 'Death Crush' but with a more sophisticated approach to songwritting. The fearsome drums, along with maniacs truly disgusting (in a good way) vocal delivery create a thick wall of sound, underneath this sonic attack the guitars snake and weave, from brutal, stop-start barchord attacks, to haunting and even dissonant arpeggio's. I can find no fault with this album, the production is necro enough to please older fans, but the album musically is sufficiantly different so that it adds to Myhems legendary status, without repeating past glories .
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wolf's Lair Abyss THE RETURN 19 May 2001
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
This is the first MAYHEM C.D. since they reformed in 1997.There are five tracks on it and the are :
1.The Vortex Void of Inhumanity 2.I am Thy Labyrinth 3.Fall of Seraphs 4.Ancient Skin 5.Symbols of Bloodswords
All of the members play to the best of their ability and the end result sounds brutal. A good release from the kings of black metal.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars  16 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Powerful comeback 24 Feb 2004
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
This is the first release from the current Mayhem lineup (Maniac, Hellhammer, Necrobutcher, Blasphemer)and it is a strong return. The production is excellent and the songs are great. Hellhammer's drumming is insane, Maniac's vocals are evil, Blasphemer's guitar style is very good and he shows more range in his skills than Euronymous. I think the length of the cd and five songs are just right, short and to the point. This is a band with alot to prove and they show plenty of anger and energy on Wolf's Lair Abyss. This is the best studio release of current lineup and I would also get the live Mediolanum Capta Est cd as well. That also has great production, they deliver the songs with the same ferocity and they're better now in concert than back in the days of Dead & Euronymous. The instruments are played better and the the band just sound so much more cohesive and together as a unit than in the past. Make it your duty to get Wolf's Lair Abyss and Mediolanum Capta Est. Listen to them both and give me a nod if you found the review helpful. If you didn't well then drop dead! =)
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Inhuman 7 Dec 2003
By Patrick Stott - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Mayhem are a band haunted by their past. Whatever they do, there will always be the debate as to whether or not they are the "true" Mayhem, should they play live, and are the current members even a shadow of ghosts long Dead?
Who knows. Who cares. The important thing should be: Is the music any good?
The short answer is yes. The longer answer is yes, Mayhem are an excellent raw black metal band on record.
This is nothing more than the merest sample of the hyper-speed insanity these possibly diseased minds are capable of. And the best part of the brevity of this disc is it leaves the listener craving more, nay, more than craving, physically addicted and needing more.
Much has been said over the years of the ability of Hellhammer, Mayhem's inhumanly fast drummer. So he's fast, so what? So are lots of drummers. Few, however, are as fast and technically proficient at speed as this man, for such a sustained period. The four tracks (plus a spooky intro) all clock in at over five minutes long. This band just doesn't slow down.
The guitar sound here is total necro (or perhaps that should be the bass sound, since the bass player is called Necrobutcher), all fuzzy, buzzing mid range tones, with not a lot of bottom end. It is almost the perfect black metal sound, providing an unexpected clarity to the high velocity riffing, while retaining the raw, lo-fi power required for convincing black metal.
Maniac's vocals are almost totally indecipherable, his raspy screech losing most of it's human character, leaving just a bare demonic wail. A nice contrasting touch is a clearer melodic voice underlining some of the vocal lines, which introduces unexpected subtleties to the mix.
Forget the "true black metal" debate. Track this down, clear your mind, turn off the lights, and set "Wolf's Lair Abyss" on repeat.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars They're still going strong! 1 Sep 2004
By Matt Pullen - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Being that this is the first Mayhem album without Euronymous, this is a fairly interesting one. This is proof that even without Mayhem's former "leader," they can still manage to pump out some blistering and worthy black metal. This isn't as raw as Deathcrush or the legendary DMDS; the production is much more clean, dry and sharp. Maniac is back on vocals, and to say the least, his style is much different than it was on Deathcrush. Instead of his former Deathcrush style screams, he's got more of a guttural and gritty shriek going on.

Many, and I mean many, will be put off by Maniac's vocals. Maniac almost sounds like he's got cicadas and beetles in his throat while he sings from his stomach. Some people may pick up on his singing right away, others may find it to be an acquired taste, and then the rest will despise his singing. At times Maniac's singing reminds me of Smeagol from Lord of the Rings, but I still manage to enjoy it when I'm not thinking of those big bug eyes and that voice that calls out for his precious. Blasphemer puts on a satisfactory performance, but his guitar sounds a little rusty and anhydrous...but it does the job decently. Some of the material sounds rather DMDS-ish (Ancient Skin, I Am Thy Labyrinth).

The drumming is rather brisk, but it's much more varied than what I expected from Mayhem - instead of the majority of just blast beats there is a lot more interchanging between double bass, snare, and cymbals. Of course this is Mayhem, so all of the songs with the exception of the opening instrumental are fast and tenacious. The opening track is a bit too long, using a clip in length of a minute or less would have done the job instead of almost two and a half minutes of thick swirling wind sounds accompanied by some static. Not only that, but this is far too short (I've seen the price on this album going for as much as a regular CD, which I find to be a tad ridiculous).

It's a worthy purchase for sure, but I have my doubts about it being worth the amount of an album, which uses up all of the space available on the CD. Get it sometime, but don't put it ahead of a kick ass full-length that you might be looking for.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mayhem's declaration of HATE 7 Mar 2005
By Lunar Strain - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Did you ever make a declaration of love? How about a declaration of hate? A declaration of hate adressed to the whole humanity? Why am I saying this? Because this album is the most eloquent acoustic expression of hate, anger and misanthropy.

Some of you are gonna tell me that I should look for the "most hatefull" album in discographies of bands like Napalm Death, Sepultura, Suffocation or Slayer. While, to those bands, the hate is the violent decomposure of violence, to Mayhem, it appears as a more intimate feeling.

I was knocked down when I first listened to this album. The 4 songs are like a hurricane...I haven't sensed so much anger spitted in humanity's face than in that short interlude from Ancient Skin, when Maniac declares with profetic, clean voice "I've captured the moment given, I denied the sickening love, turned to the purity of anger."

Al the 4 songs have an incredible weight, given by the intensity of the riffs and the heavy, very good drumming and a speed unexlored before, even by Mayhem. There is one song, Ancient Skin, in wich the band says "This is who we are". The song starts very fast, and a feeling of "deja-vu" takes place, but, after 1 minute, Hellhammer rises the tempo of the drumming, the speed reaches an unexpected high level, simultaneously with the transition to the very dense web of riffs (typical to this Wolf's Lair Abyss), preparing for Maniac's entrance. His part consist of the most violent vocals ever recorded on a black metal album.

This album fascinated me since the first audition. The intro - the breathing of a septic body and the trumpets annnouncing a new Era (in black metal), followed by the unleashing of high speed and immense brutallity and a very good instrumental technique.

This is one amazon black metal release...
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Savage and brutal 26 Aug 2002
By burritobrother - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
This is a great, great cd. As the first Mayhem release with the current lineup, they came right out of the box with a masterpiece of unanticipated power. Each track is just monstrous in every way; and the production is some of the very best you'll likely ever hear on a black metal release. Note that this contains the first part of their epic full- length release "Grand Declaration Of War", so be sure to buy both. You won't be disappointed if raw, seriously dangerous metal is what you're looking for.
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