Pentagram – Last Rites
The new Pentagram came out today! I had pre-ordered it a few days ago and right when I got up this morning, I fired up my PC and let the download start. All total today I’ve got 4 listens into it including letting it play while I am writing this and feel that it’s enough to give it a proper review.
I’ve got to say that I didn’t really care for any of the Pentagram stuff after Victor Griffin’s departure from the band in 1994 (no offense to Joe Hasselvander), it just was missing something special…and obviously it was VG’s guitar playing. He’s got a great style that is just right for Bobby’s vocal stylings.
I had heard 2 songs from the album already and had already acquainted myself with them pretty well in the last week or 2; those songs being Call The Man and 8. Both tracks have a great feel to them and sort of show a “mature” sound to the band. This album seems to be a little more melodic than albums past. Bobby’s voice sounds great…nice and strong. Clean living has certainly given his voice some power again. The song Into The Ground has some good vocal harmonies that I assume are Bobby’s. Having downloaded the album, I have no liner notes to check. That’s one drawback of going all digital these days. Victor’s signature sound is all over this album. His solos are great as expected.
The songs 8 and Windmills and Chimes really show a new side to their music that I hadn’t heard before. They are a little more progressive and not so typical stoner/doom like they get classified as. Windmills and Chimes (remake) is really quite a beautiful song and one of my favorites on the album for sure. The song American Dream sounds similar to 8 when it starts but quickly goes in a different direction. Walk In Blue Light (remake from First Daze Here) and Nothing Left really sound like they could have been used on Relentless or Day of Reckoning. Great classic sounding Pentagram! I have to admit that the only song that hasn’t grabbed me yet is Death In 1st Person. It’s not a bad song at all, but just doesn’t hook me in like the rest of the album.
The only negative thing I can say about the album is in the production. It’s a wee tad muddy and Bobby seems a little too low in the mix…but that’s just my opinion. Otherwise I think it’s an awesome return to form by the band.
In general, it sounds like Bobby and Victor had fun making this record. It’s got really good energy and positive vibes to it and I can undoubtedly say that if you have ever even remotely liked this band, you’ll like this album.
8.5/10 if I was forced to put a number on it.
*UPDATE* – I didn’t realize until yesterday (4/13/11) that most of the tracks on here are remakes. While I am a little disappointed, the album still deserves the rating I gave it. BUY IT! Don’t download illegally.
1. Treat Me Right
2. Call The Man
3. Into The Ground
5. Everything’s Turning To Night
6. Windmills And Chimes
7. American Dream
8. Walk In Blue Light
10. Death In 1st Person
11. Nothing Left
12. All Your Sins – Reprise
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