Time flies by so fast, to the point where it seems that Satan’s previous studio endeavor Cruel Magic seems that it was out in disc stores only yesterday, and now here they’re again with a new release. In this single, which bears the title Twelve Infernal Lords, the band proves that their signature songwriting mindset hasn’t been disempowered of its intriguing notions at all, resuming the streak of bringing top-notch material to the metal scene since 2013.
What is there not to be found here? You’ve got the sinister guitar riffs and melodies from virtuosic ax duo Russ Tippins and Steve Ramsey, the agile, deep and compelling voice of Brian Ross which has remained almost changeless for over 30 years, the punchy and aggressive drumming from percussionist and rhythm calibrator Sean Taylor and of course let’s all not forget about Graeme English’s crucial role. Honestly, if it weren’t for his appearance in the single, the song would feel empty, flat, and not that prodigal at all.
Personally, one of my favorite moments here is the alteration of tonality towards the end of the track from the evil, Phrygian guitar solo to a more excite and exhilarating one. I also prefer how the band keeps producing their latest material with an old school sound, unlike how other famous NWOBHM bands such as Cloven Hoof and Saxon do nowadays. My only complaint is that Ross’ vocals are mixed quite low, giving the impression to the experienced listenership of metal music that the volume of this specific musical aspect belongs in a demo, not a single release.
Overall, Satan definitely seem not to have fallen victim to compositional infertility, delivering another instant classic to their audience and making them anticipate their next full-length studio effort ambitiously.
Purchase Twelve Infernal Lords exclusively with the 186th issue of Decibel Magazine here
Release date: April 2020