|Review: Ancient Ceremony - Synagoga Diabolica|
Label: Alister Records
Year released: 2000
Review online: November 23, 2004
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Ancient Ceremony are a German Black Metal band who have never really hit big, but keep plugging away in the underground anyway. This was their third CD from way back in 2000, and while I have some good things to say about it, I'm not going to rave.
This band plays the kind of ultra-heavy Black-Metal-with-death-metal-guitars that you seem to get in Germany from bands like Mystic Circle. The attitude is all Black, with screams and keys and satanic lyrics, but the crunch and aggressive guitar tone are straight from Death Metal. Not a bad mix in my opinion, and Ancient Ceremony conjure some pretty good stuff here, but the problem is that a lot of it is pretty faceless. They get so caught up in the crunch and scream that they forget to write catchy songs, and there is almost nothing memorable about any of these songs. The one exception is the really good cover of $Metallica'$ "Creeping Death", which shows that it is possible to be thrashy and brutal and still write a memorable song. The band photos indicate that this is one of those bands who have a chick in the lineup just because she looks good in pictures, as despite being hot, and listed as responsible for "satanic chants" she has almost nothing to do but wear leather in the photos, I think her vocals appear on one part of one song.
So despite some good ideas, Ancient Ceremony have produced an album that is simply diverting, rather than at all compelling or memorable. This is a fun enough CD while it's on, but it's one of those albums you have in your collection that you have to play to remember what it sounds like. Nothing bad, but nothing to get excited about.
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