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Review: Cathedral - Soul Sacrifice
Soul Sacrifice

Label: Earache Records
Year released: 1992
Duration: 24:46
Tracks: 4
Genre: Doom Metal


Review online: September 19, 2019
Reviewed by: Mjölnir
Readers' Rating
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Rated 4.1/5 (82%) (10 Votes)

Released a little under a year after the birth-defect inducing Forest of Equilibrium, this EP showed a drastic change in direction for Cathedral, who decided to go from bleak, pitiless dirges that went at a whopping 5 rpm at the fastest to a more rocking and energetic approach to Doom that still retained some of the demented atmosphere from the debut. This is most evident in the opening title cut, which is a rerecording of a track with the same name from Forest of Equilibrium, only it's longer, faster, and generally much better than the original. The original songs on here are also all pretty good, but I'd say only the excellent "Autumn Twilight" works as a full song with its grooving riffs and stunning lead work. "Frozen Rapture" tries to meld the dragging heaviness of old with their newfound energy with so-so results and "Golden Blood (Flowing)" sounds more like a collection of songwriting ideas than a full song, but both are still enjoyable enough to sit through.

There are some diehards that feel the band sold out for opting for a more accessible sound, but frankly, I can't really imagine what else they could have done besides either keep remaking Forest or literally stop their pulses so they could play even more slowly. The increase in speed really let everyone stretch out to show off what they could do, with Gaz and Jennings' guitar work gaining a clear '70s flair to it while still being heavy as hell, and Lee starting to adopt his trademark style, for better or worse. They would further refine this approach on later albums, but this is served as a good start for the band as they made their way into Metal history. If nothing else, get this for "Autumn Twilight", which might be one of the best two or three songs they ever did.

More about Cathedral...
Review: Endtyme (reviewed by Lars Christiansen)
Review: Forest of Equilibrium (reviewed by Mjölnir)
Review: The Carnival Bizarre (reviewed by Mjölnir)
Review: The Ethereal Mirror (reviewed by Mjölnir)
Review: The Garden Of Unearthly Delights (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: The Guessing Game (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
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