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Marduk: Viktoria (2018)

Written by: Kev Rowland

Looking through my collection, I can see Marduk’s debut album from 1992, ‘Dark Endless’ peeking out among some of their others, and must confess to always having an interest in the Swedish Black Metal act. Guitarist Morgan Håkansson has kept a tight ship over the years, and while they may not have always have pleased their hardcore fans with some musical shifts, they can always be relied upon to release an album that is always interesting. The same is true with their latest offering, which is firmly within the black metal fold, but actually moves quite widely within the genre. Some of the songs are incredibly dynamic and powerful, while others have arrangements that makes one think that they are becoming a little too sanitised and possible stale?

This feels like a very safe album in so many respects, melodic and full of tight riffs and musicianship, but it doesn’t feel dangerous and there are definitely times when the melodies do feel fairly basic. But, and it is a fairly large “but” to be fair, there are also times when the whole thing lifts and they show again why they have such a strong reputation within the genre. Overall it is an interesting album I enjoyed listening to, but does it have the danger and air of some of their others? Probably not. However, even an average to good album from Marduk will generally be better than many others being released, and I am sure that fans of the genre will be looking this out.

Rating: 7/10

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Track list:
1. Werwolf
2. June 44
3. Equestrian Bloodlust
4. Tiger I
5. Narva
6. The Last Fallen
7. Viktoria
8. The Devil’s Song
9. Silent Night

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Links:
http://marduk.nu/
http://www.centurymedia.com/

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