Review: Thyrgrim – Dekaden

This German black metal band, founded in 2004, released their fifth full-length album called Dekaden (decades). Unlike many other bands in this genre, Thyrgrim tries to remain true to the original black metal sound, reminding of Immortal and Burzum. Nevertheless, when compared, it is clear that there’s been some upgrading in recording and editing over the past 30 years. Especially bass-lines are more predominantly present.

The philosophy behind Thyrgrim’s music is portaying “basic feelings like hate, anger, grief and depression”, and they “don’t need symbolism neither Satan to express themselves”. This is apparent when going over the track-titles and listening to the lyrics. Opening with Dette er tysk svart metal, which is Norwegian for “This is German Black Metal”, the album discusses subjects as; human sickness, hatred, signs of weakness and death.

It is hard for me to not be overly-enthusiastic since I’m a great black metal fan and appreciate bands who are true to its original sound. So I will approach the album as neutral as possible.

The opening track hits like a bomb with a shredding guitar-riff and nice fast blast-beats. It has good dynamics and the vocals are pure and raw. Using the Norwegian language for this opening track must be intended as an homage to the origins of black metal and strikes me as a rather intelligent and original idea.

The album continues strongly with crushing riffs and a dark ambiance. Track number 6 brings a two minute interlude, which wasn’t entirely necessary since it doesn’t really add anything to the album, except for some dynamics. This being one minor point of criticism, track 7 makes up for its predecessor by continuing in the initial hypnotizing setting, closing off with the very appropriate track called Wenn es Schneit (when it snows).

Overall, the album is consistent, it never bores, the guitar-riffs are very pleasant, the drum sections are simple but effective and the vocals are powerful and scraping. This is certainly the kind of album you’d want to listen to on a cold, snowy, Christmas evening, while your religious friends are enjoying some happy chimes and jingles.

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