Dark Funeral/Attera Totus Sanctus

Dark Funeral is a Swedish black metal band from Stockholm, founded by guitarists Blackmoon and Lord Ahriman in 1993. They emerged during the second wave of black metal.

Their lyrical themes have traditionally pertained to Satanism and anti-Christianity. Certain past and present members including Blackmoon, Ahriman, Caligula and Chaq Mol have each declared an affinity for Satanism, with Ahriman and Caligula notably being practitioners of LaVeyan Satanism.[1] In their earlier years, their lyrical themes usually revolved specifically around depictions ofHell and Satan. After Emperor Magus Caligula joined the band, their lyrics came to focus more on blasphemy and anti-Christian rhetoric, although there have been several exceptions to this.

Attera Totus Sanctus (intended Latin translation of “Destroy All the Holy”) is Dark Funeral‘s fourth full-length studio album. It was released on October 24, 2005, in Europe through Regain Records, and on November 29, 2005, in the United States throughCandlelight Records USA. The title was chosen to convey the band’s vehement anti–Right-Hand Path stance.[4] Attera Totus Sanctusis the first album to feature guitarist Chaq Mol and the last album to feature drummer Matte Modin and also features session bassistGustaf Hielm.

The Analysis—-

King Antichrist—-You never even get a chance to sit for a moment before the mayhem that is Dark Funeral invades your brain. The sound is a bit dated on this release….Death Metal has come a long way in the past few years….but the integrity…message and aggression is 100% real. I am blown away with the speed of the disc and the vitriol that is produced with the vocal….this is real, genuine and intense! I love how despite the nose…there is a melody and structure……grab this and listen!

666 Voices Inside—-Every time I listen to this release, it seems the layers of sound seems to increase. I’m amazed at the technicality of a disc produced even in 2005. The vocal is so damn urgent….delivered almost in a puking style that makes you want to break everything that is around you. There are many bands in this genre these days that are less than genuine….this band…is the real deal. I love the vocal inflection as well….at once deep and from the gut…the higher pitch seems to come from nowhere…this is brilliant!

Attera Totus Santus—-Allowing you a moment to catch your breath, this track emerges from the fog and gradually builds steam until it is a full on assault. The layers of music are incredible….but way underneath all of the ‘mess’ is an unmistakable rhythm that drives the song. Trust me…this is not thrown together noise….this is constructed and well performed music that really stands the test of time. Not sure how the hell the drummer stays up or how the vocals don’t die out…but this is incredible. I would have loved to see this live….damn it all!

Godhate—-What really can you say…if you want fear, aggression and a wanderlust for the dark side…than this is the band for you. I wish this were not a burnt copy of this release…I would love to have the lyric sheet. Man….you can just feel the disdain and the pure disgust through the vocal. This track has some great breaks in it….not sure how that is possible when you play so fast…but they are there. Pure mastery!

Atrium Regina—-This is a surprise at the onset, but you will not be disappointed if you want the aggression to continue. The vocal seems much clearer on this track…but damn…this throat takes a workout. The music is a bit slower…with a downshift in the tempo…but the ebbs and flows are in place as before. The production…in my opinion is a bit lackluster…but consider the time…this is not Dimmu Borgir!

Angel Flesh—-From the onset, this is more metal than death…..but just wait a minute!!!! This quickly dissolves into pure mayhem and a nose that is both disgusting and remarkably pleasing. The tempo shifts keep my interest…..it is not just a pure noise pummel…there is musicianship and talent at play here. I love the diversity of the band….they obvious plan the attack before the war begins….as good death soldiers do!

Feed On Mortals—-Slowly rising from the foggy marsh, the assault is not far behind…but delivered in a masterful rhythmic manner. I can feel the sway of the bass guitar as it keeps a frantic pace. I think bands like this are incredibly underrated…..people are under the impression it is all hashed out in a moment of pure un-understandable noise….have no doubt…this has every element that is involved in bringing a quality track to your ears.

Final Ritual—-With an incredible drum progression to herald in the track, I wonder how the hell one man can keep that pace. The spoken vocal at the onset is indecipherable as is the latter vocal…lol. It is easy to get the drift though…this is hate…anger….aggression and TRUTH!

Athum Ritual—-Nicely executed with a downward chord progression. This track got my attention right away…it has a deeper and more melodic sound than I expected…this is almost addicting if you listen to it a few times in a row…it seeds inside your cranium and grows with eack listen….really a nice track….shows the true talent of this band.

Open The Gates—-With a swift return to all I have come to expect, the drums are the first thing to smack you upside the head. Damn ths is fast….even including some nice high hats to go along with the whole thing. Once the vocal enters the fray, there is a downshift to the music that allows for a fuller more melodic sound. When he screams SATAN….you know where you are….welcome to hell!!!

Arrival Of Satan—-Indeed……he seems to be here. The quality of this recording rather suck….it sounds like I’m inside a wind tunnel. Everything about this production is chaotic and sub par. This was not impressive to me…but it flows fairly well so I will accept it.

Apprentice Of Satan—-Well, this sounds like a live track…but is delivered as masterfully as everything else on this release….I am blown away by the quality musicianship that comprised this band…..especially considering the revolving door of people that ‘belonged’ to the band. This is consistent….that center break….is just timed masterfully…this is intense!!!

No More Roses—-Another live track, this is greeted by the audience with resounding chants and enthusiasm. There is no let up to the brutality that comprises the song or the performance This seems to be two discs in one…but I won’t complain…the quality live is as in the studio….I remain impressed. The wall of sound that is produced…just makes me sit back with my mouth hanging open…..the breaks and the melody are intact…..I wish I had been there.

Secrets—-Well received by the audience, the music never lets up for even one second….jeez….get this guy some cough drops. The cheers coming from the audience are incredible….I miss not seeing shows like this. The downshift tempos from the guitars are so instrumental in driving the song along at the pace that is needed…and you know as well as I do…live, most songs are at a faster tempo…imagine that!

Vobisam Santanas—-This added disc ends on a nice note…any Latin inflection in Death Metal is a plus right? We can only imagine the true meaning of every puked word that is uttered…..I almost feel drained after the intensity of this disc…..I can only imagine how you would feel after a live experience from this band…..I love this…..will consider it a treasure in my collection.

***1/2 out of 5


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