“Blood Fire Death” is a bit different than your run-of-the-mill black metal outing. It's beautiful, in that regard. Whatever. The songs are heavy and quick, to the point and ending in the same fashion. Bathory ended with … This must be my favorite Bathory album! It is interesting that Bathory's most popular masterpiece was also their transition work. Don’t expect any type of slow down either, since “Pace ‘Till Death” is virtually the same way. Named after Hungarian countess Elizabeth Báthory, they are considered pioneers of black metal and Viking metal, and one of the most influential acts in heavy metal as a whole. How could anyone not think this is totally awesome? But that’s also a bit of a drawback, and what I mean by that is that since he doesn’t have a great vocal range, it can get a bit repetitive after awhile. When I first heard it, I simply could not fucking believe it. As a matter of fact, this song is played so fucking fast, that the terms Speed Metal and Thrash Metal can NOT be used to describe such a rapid song. I also have to note that the main rhythm of the two epics is the same as the previous showstopper Enter The Eternal Fire. The remaining contents on here, which is credited as being Bathory’s earliest ventures into what is now known as Viking metal, could be reasonably chalked up as the token epic/progressive ventures of Metallica and Megadeth, except that the principle influence on these songs is Manowar rather than Sabbath or classical music. This album is a great example of how unusual production can work very well in some cases, as the screaming and the guitars sound very sinister buried in the mix. Since these ideas came to nothing, it would be the last time that Quorthon ever considered playing live with Bathory. Acoustic guitar and a tense choral backdrop complements dark riffs that wouldn't have needed the support to stand out on their own. The band is named after the infamous Hungarian countess Elizabeth Báthory. Mind you, there's still plenty of hellfire and Satan present here, but "Equimanthorn", "Massacre" and "Chariots of Fire" were the obvious turning point from comic-book inspired devil worship to Conan-inspired epicness. Motorhead influences abounded, and the band played loud and fast, with more than a passing nod to Venom and other black metal luminaries. And this is how side A finish and when you’ll hear it, you may understand what I meant when I wrote that the order of track is not accidental here! “Under the Sign of the Black Mark ” is still a transparent but loud motherf**ker. He didn’t mean to hurt me! And Bathory had Blood Fire Death. Under The Sign Of The Black Mark surpassed the doomed heaviness of Celtic Frost’s To Mega Therion, the speed of Sodom’s Obsessed By Cruelty, and the brutality of Kreator’s Pleasure To Kill and Slayer’s Reign In Blood. “Call From the Grave” is another moody piece (note a snatch of Chopin’s “Marche Funebre” in the instrumental section) whilst “Equimanthorn” balances thrash with mid-tempo pounding, as well as giving Marduk one of their album titles with its lyrics (“Even the Heavens Shall Burn When We Are Gathered”). The first assault, “Massacre” is an up tempo song with lots of brutal sounds and obscure vocals. Minor silliness aside, 'Blood Fire Death' is an essential album for fans of Black and Death Metal. An acoustic start, a raw riff, a mid-tempo grind, and an ethereal chorus backed up by what sounds like orchestral kettledrums combine gives this cut an otherworldly resonance. "Blood Fire Death" belongs to the strongest efforts of Quorthon, at least for those who do not think that pure Viking metal is the ultimate sub genre. They stopped performing live early on and never toured; Blood Fire Death still lends itself more to the dirty blackthrash of their early period, but the lavish Viking folk arrangements and epic scope created a stark contrast. The "Under the Sign of the Black Mark" album is also the last one to feature the evil lyrical concept as it was dropped shortly after for the viking themes. The vocals are discernable, yet included the scream not quite popularized yet in black metal - another element placing Bathory above the rest (especially at the time). The song is a steady five minutes of rocking, the only climax the heightened slamming of the drums over the noisy distorted rumblings in the end. [13], Although Bathory's fourth album, Blood Fire Death (1988), largely followed in the style of the albums before it, some songs had a very different style. Despite being influenced intially by Venom, Bathory ended up creating a legacy of their own.

“Born a child of the underworld” you’ll hear the demon choir chant! Seriously, most songs here wouldn’t sound out of place on Darkness Descends. Fight or flight! The riffs blur, the drums cook, the solos are shredded and choppy, and the total delivery is as cold and destructive as a punishing arctic storm. [20][10] Quorthon often denied being influenced by Venom and claimed that he "heard Venom for the first time in late 1984 or early 1985", never owned a Venom album and was primarily influenced by Black Sabbath, Motörhead and GBH;[10] however, he admitted in an interview for Metal Forces that he first listened to Venom's Black Metal in 1983 and considered it "one of the best albums ever made. This is not an album you can listen to quietly while reading a book. But in the case of Bathory, I have to make an exception. Not only did he have a hand in shaping black metal but he also forged a genre now known as Viking metal. Their (unofficial) cover version is called "To Walk the Eternal Fields" and was part of "Under a Funeral Moon". Even the drums are ranking high on the scales of perfection, they aren't a constant double-bass assault, but rather, more of a blend of all the genres Bathory is associated with. “A Fine Day to Die” starts with a fabulous arpeggio on acoustic guitar; and this is exactly what one might entitle ‘The Calm before the Storm’.

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