|Review: In Aeternum - Nuclear Armageddon|
Label: Cryptorium Records
Year released: 2020
Originally released in: 2003
Review online: July 29, 2020
Reviewed by: Luxi Lahtinen
Rated 4/5 (80%) (2 Votes)
This is the third release from Swedish Black/Death devil worshippers In Aeternum, originally released back in 2003 but now receiving a lavish re-release courtesy of Cryptorium Records teaming up with vocalist and founding member David Larsson. The original pressing contained recording errors like minor skips in a few of the tracks, a fact that made David very unhappy with it at the time, so fixing that is the first major change of note in this reissue. Rather than just releasing the same album 17 years later, however, David and the label have opted to also include a bevy of bonus tracks, including covers of songs from Sarcófago, Kreator and Bathory, a live album featuring rough recordings of two shows from 2001 and 2002, and a lavish 12-page booklet with new art, previously unseen photos, and liner notes from David himself, all of which makes for a grand repackaging for a pretty solid album.
If you've heard any other release from this band, then you already know what this album is like. This is a very Scandinavian sounding release of thrashy Black/Death that's reminiscent of old classics like The Secrets of the Black Arts and De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas, and it's a very good example of that sound. Frankly, I've always found In Aeternum never got the recognition they deserved, for while they're not original in the slightest, they know what they are, and on this release, they delivered on all fronts.
I wish I could say that the accompanying live album Live Armageddon did a good job of showing this, but sadly it's pretty lacking. They contain audio from live shows at the 2001 2 Heavy 4 You! festival in Falkenberg, Sweden and the 2002 Open Hel Fest in Volyni, Czech Republic, and the sound quality for both is what you could generously call rough. The first show sounds a little better than the second one, but it's clear that these were recorded raw rather than with a soundboard, and without any studio tricks to polish them up, it makes for a fairly unpleasant listening experience overall.
Still, it's hard to complain with a package this complete for an album that started out so incomplete, especially for such a quality release. Most bands can only dream of a repressing this grand, and if there's any band who've paid their dues to get it, it's In Aeternum. If you want to check in on these underrated Black/Death maniacs, this is the best place for you to start.
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