on 29 November 2012
I instantly knew this was a good album when I first listened to it, but it took quite a few listens to grasp all the elements and start to really appreciate it.
In many ways this album is a natural progression from "Ad Majorem Sathanas Gloriam", albeit in a very radical way. IMHO it is also much better than that album.
We all know that the other half of Gorogorth reverted to the very traditional (not without success) on "Quantos Possunt Ad Satanitatem Trahunt". However, in losing the legal battle to use the Gorgoroth name, Gaahl and King Ov Hell have effectively been freed to make better and more intelligent music; unconstrained by any need to "Praise Satan". Indeed, as the band name suggests, the concept is rather the God in oneself and in nature and becoming the "Ubermensch". The will to grow spiritually is perfectly expressed in this very mature style of music. As a result, this is way more progressive, experimental, tuneful & keyboard laden than it would have been had Gorgoroth not split. However, this is all built on base that is solidly "black metal" (in contrast to the likes of "Umskiptar"). It rocks harder than most Black Metal due to the 70s metal influences (but thankfully not in an OTT modern Darkthrone way). If the other half of Gorgoroth won the battle, God Seed have won the war by birthing the best thing since "Pentagram".
One of my favourite things about this album is the great variety between tracks. The excellent "Alt Liv" even calls to mind "Rammstein", but rest assured it is FAR more menacing. Gaahl's vocal performance is as good as ever and generally very clear, albeit that some tracks are in Norwegian this time. The lyrics are steeped in Norse mythology.
Finally a word on the "Special Edition": All you get is a rather pointless "Interlude" halfway through the album, and a very short second outro track. It is packaged in a traditional style digipack, with slightly raised artwork on the front. All in all, it is not worth spending much extra money on, but is nice to have if you can get it for about the same price as the regular album.
I can't wait to see this band live later this year!