Begin the ritual: get some time to yourself, put on a good stereo or good headphones, and put the volume up slightly louder than you would normally.
It starts, and continues, with a bass-heavy air raid siren– when the blast beats start, a London blitzkrieg later, you (seriously) might mistake them for machine gun fire.
So much bass on this; very cool and a nice improvement to the (already good) sounds of previous LP Wormwood.
Martuus’ vocals, unlike Watain’s (rageful, exultant) or Nefarium’s (just rageful), sound like he’s rasping out his unfiltered, genuine hatred– because he’s being strangled to death.
He’s dying, and he’s got no reason to lie to you.
And Mortuus HATES you.
I love the plain cover, barely an image, but a powerful nearly-monotone one, with an Old English font title and the band’s name as legible as can be– old confidence for a black metal band. And for some reason, adding the “by” in by Marduk makes for seemingly subtle modesty, which makes them seem supremely confident, and is the crowning moment of awesome for the cover.
Track one, “Warschau II– Headhunter Halfmoon,” with it’s bombastic five-tone riff, Track two, “Wacht Am Rhein Drumbeats of Death,” culminates in what may be wolf howls, and–
Three, “Prochorovka – Blood and Sunflowers,” is the “ballad”– Marduk playing sludge/doom– and it is fucking awesome. A combination of Marduk, Earth and Winter. I’ve read about this track being considered “filler,” and while it is different from most other Marduk stuff, if it was in fact intended as filler, they should do that more often. I really dug this song.
Iron Dawn is three songs, and it’s the perfect length: enough to blow you away, not enough to desensitize you.
Speaking of which, fun Iron Dawn story:
I had been listening to an LP and reading. For some reason on my stereo the LPs have to be turned up more loudly than do CDs, so the volume was way up. A storm front was passing through, and it knocked out the power for about a nanosecond– just enough to turn off the stereo and back on.
Now, if the stereo does in fact cut off, for whatever reason, it autoplays whatever CD is in it. At whatever volume it was on.
The record had finished a while ago, and I didn’t even notice that the stereo had reset….
…until, at jet engine fucking volume, “Warschau II– Headhunter Halfmoon” started playing (it intros, remember, with air raid sirens) and scared the HOLY LIVING JESUS SHIT out of me.
Ear-splitting air-raid sirens, just after a power outage, during a storm…?
I’m pretty proud I didn’t piss myself.*
The point IS– Iron Dawn, three songs or not, is a mighty record.
Especially in the wrong hands.
*I actually did piss myself.**
***No, I’m not.****
****Or am I?