I’m sure I’ve said this before, and I’ll undoubtedly say it again at some point – there’s something about major key black metal that just sounds so right. I am a sucker for melody, kvltness be damned. In that respect, Germany’s Entartung totally hit my sweet spot on their third album, Baptized Into the Faith of Lust. The album is wall-to-wall buzzsaw guitars with just enough melodic underpinnings that some of guitarist Lykormas’s riffs might even qualify as catchy. Make no mistake, though – there are no Deafheaven-esque forays into shoegaze or indie rock to be found in Entartung’s sound. As deeply felt and atmospheric as the music may get at times, this is still black fucking metal down to its core.
The unquestionable highlight of Baptized Into the Faith of Lust is the nearly 9-minute second track, “Vices of the Prophet.” Built on a series of interlocking sections rather than a more traditional verse-chorus-verse structure, it opens with one of the most overtly melodic riffs on the album before transitioning into a very regal-sounding trebly verse riff. There are a couple of breaks between the verses where the riffs have more of a punk influence, not that far off from Kvelertak at their best. Slightly after the 5:00 minute mark is an acoustic interlude that slowly builds back up to a really sweet half power chord/half arpeggio riff that carries the entire coda section of the song.
Most of the tracks on the album are almost as strong as ‘Vices.” The intro riff to “De Sura Frukterna” is one of the strongest on the album with the way it uses diminished and suspended chords to twist itself into a slightly different shape with each repetition. “Black Dog of God” intersperses moments of Behemoth-like bombast with more outstanding, atmospheric riffing. The only song that doesn’t fully click for me is “Der Werewolf,” and that’s because the main riff sounds a little to busy to me with its use of tremolo-picked single notes instead of the more straightforward riffing of the rest of the album. It’s not a bad song by any means, but that riff kind of sticks out because it’s so different from everything else on the album.
On the whole, Entartung’s Baptized Into the Faith of Lust is a really strong album that’s I’m definitely going to have on heavy rotation for at least the next few months. If you’re like me and dig some melody with your black metal, check this one out ASAP.
Baptized Into the Faith of Lust will be available on March 16 both digitally and on physical formats via W.T.C. Productions.