Darkthrone – ‘Old Star’
Album Review By Adam McCann
Peaceville Records/Black Metal
Every so often, a band delivers an album which completely blindsides the listener. This occurred in 2016 when Darkthrone unleashed their ‘Arctic Thunder’ album; a huge leap away from the crust punk of the previous albums, ‘Arctic Thunder’ returned to the classic Darkthrone sound. Yet, an album that is this good can only leave a significant void to fill; a void which became very realistic when the Norwegians announced that their latest album ‘Old Star’.
Thankfully, ‘Old Star’ manages to blast its way forward and it becomes immediately apparent that once again Nocturno Culto and Fenriz mean business. ‘Old Star’ wastes no time, clocking in at just under 40 minutes, Darkthrone know how to cut back the fat and make sure that everything is exactly how it is needed. In fact, as an album, it begins to go some way into not only keeping up with its predecessor, but also equalling it, tracks such as tearing opener ‘I Muffle Your Inner Choir’, ‘Alp Man’ and the title track would quite happily fit in amongst the classic era of Darkthrone. Yet, it is the track ‘The Hardship of the Scots’ that is most intriguing, coupled with a riff that is possibly as classic heavy metal as they come, this track shows that Darkthrone are more than capable of experimenting with their sound without leaving their remit or altering the overall sound of the album. Furthermore, ‘Old Star’ has the ability to appeal to those old school fans of Darkthrone by having a relatively raw overall sound compared to the bands previous few albums.
As an album ‘Old Star’ is exceptionally enjoyable, each song is very memorable and provides a completely different feel to ‘Arctic Thunder’ rather than a complete carbon copy. Once again, Darkthrone have delivered an excellent album that will undoubtedly still be talked about when the end of year lists are compiled.
Rating : 90/100
MHF Magazine/Adam McCann