|Review: Pentagram - Be Forewarned|
Label: Peaceville Records
Year released: 1994
Genre: Doom Metal
Review online: March 4, 2021
Reviewed by: MetalMike
Rated 4/5 (80%) (8 Votes)
I've heard the name Pentagram plenty of times over the years which is not surprising as this Washington, DC-based band has existed since the early '70s. I knew they were a doom band but never heard anything by them until I decided to remedy that with a review of 1994's Be Forewarned, the band's fourth full-length album.
Yup, this is doom alright. All the requisites are here from slow tempos, reverb-soaked guitars, and plaintive singing about occult topics (in this case mainly vampires). Singer Bobby Liebling has been with the band since it's earliest days and continues to man the microphone nearly 50 years later. His voice is decent but plain and I don't hear anything all that distinctive on Be Forewarned, but he suits the music well enough. None of the songs are overly gripping with many being the sort of heavy blues that a lot of '70s bands based their sounds on. I can hear similarities to another early, doomy band, California's Cirith Ungol, though they were much more distinctive. It also sounds like Glenn Danzig and Jerry Cantrell might have listened to some (or a lot of) Pentagram at some point, especially "Bride of Evil" with a riff that sounds like it might have been stuck in Cantrell's head around the time he was writing "Man in the Box."
I can't say there is anything on Be Forewarned that would make doom fans forget about Black Sabbath or Candlemass but they deserve kudos for longevity, that's for sure. If old-school, blue-based doom satisfies your sweet tooth, you probably already know about Pentagram but if not Be Forewarned is a pretty solid album.
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