November 02, 2019

Sodom - Masquerade In Blood (1995)

Country: Germany
Language: English
Genre: Thrash Metal
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© 1995 Steamhammer
AllMusic Review by Eduardo Rivadavia
Following upon a string of underachieving albums, 1995's Masquerade in Blood was, at the time of its release, considered something of a return to form for Teutonic speed metal pioneers Sodom. Sadly, hindsight reveals that such enthusiasm was rather exaggerated, but then, those had been some pretty abysmal albums. Anyway, more than anything, Masquerade in Blood ushers in yet another attempt to modernize Sodom's post-thrash/pre-death style for the mid-1990s -- and a successful update it is, in style if not quite substance. Surely boasting the heaviest guitar crunch of Sodom's long career, the opening title track mows down eardrums with the efficiency of one of those invisible hedge-cutters (yes, that's a very silly analogy, but you get the picture). So what if frontman Tom Angelripper's vocals are generally buried in the mix because of this? Despite their fairly ambitious-sounding titles, "Fields of Honour" and the same-period Kreator-esque "Gathering of Minds" hardly reveal him as some kind of extreme metal poet ("Sodomy and Lust," anyone?). But getting back to the music (and given this reviewer's inability to analyze German-sung numbers like "Verrecke!" and "Mantelmann" for their wording, its high time we do), Sodom continually deliver trusty, if hardly overwhelming death metal in subsequent songs like "Shadow of Damnation" and "Peacemaker's Law." And the highlight, "Unwanted Youth," definitely stands out thanks to a decidedly punk rock-inspired chorus break. Sticking with the punk theme, the album concludes with a welcome cover of the Anti-Nowhere League gem "Let's Break the Law," a perfect auf wiedersehen to send the kids home with a smile. They really deserve it after withstanding such a dire listening experience.

tags: sodom, masquerade in blood, 1995, flac,

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