One hell of an aural experience

By now everyone and their corpse-paint wearing mate is aware of the origins and trials of Mayhem. 

The fact that the band are still recording and releasing music is testament to the ignorant drive of everyone involved; the fact that what they are putting out continues to be relevant and quality is an added bonus, meaning Mayhem aren’t just resting on their ferocious laurels.

Mayhem has often been willing and able to go in different directions and never allow themselves to be boxed in. This album sees a change to that non-formula.The last couple of years spent on the road touring their first album and celebrating its place upon the mantle of highly regarded black metal has all bled heavily into this album. Obvious from the opening bars of ‘The Dying False King’, this is the backward step the band said they would never feel the need to take, although the crispness of a more modern production manages to retain their signature cold sound.

The band sounds the clearest they have ever been, every riff and drum strike clear and precise, whilst Atilla is in fine vocal form displaying every talent at his disposal, from low guttural growl to an almost choral delivery.  Of course, this does not mean that Daemon is easy listening. No album from this band is easy listening, and Mayhem would not have it any other way.

Daemon is the story of Hell being told from a denizen watching the misery that takes place while rueing their own place amongst the chaos.  As the story proceeds, it flows so well that it is obvious that this was set to be taken in one uneasy sitting, like some kind of dark theatre show Mayhem has presented to see just how much you are willing to take. As such it makes it difficult to pull out one or two highlights as the album, swallowed whole, is one hell of an aural experience. The only way any one track makes sense is as it passes from the one that precedes it.

So grab your favourite cloak and unholy book, maybe just a little of that Panda paint (too much might ruin that cloak) and go find a dark corner to sit and take in this album in its entirety. Perhaps you will be able to pick it apart and discover a standout track or two, but in my mind this darkness most foul can only be taken as intended: one big hellish bite and commence chewing.

  1. The Dying False King
  2. Agenda Ignis
  3. Bad Blood
  4. Malum
  5. Falsified and Hated
  6. Aeon Deamonium
  7. Worthless Abominations Destroyed
  8. Daemon Spawn
  9. Of Worms And Ruins
  10. Invoke the Oath