Feels good man.
Anyway, since I am back behind the keyboard in an official capacity, it's time to get back to the contributing.
What I have for you today is one of the few truly solid Black Metal releases of 2011, which has been a terribly slow year for the genre. Morbid Blood, by Greek Black Metal warlords Ravencult, is not one of those "By the Dark Lords, Black Metal has changed forever!" type albums: that is not how these guys roll. But it is just rock solid, fun as hell and very honest traditional Black Metal.
Kudos off the bat to the excellent cover art, which is what first drew me to the album. It's the perfect color, form and overall level of evil we expect from a Black Metal band. And so is the music: this is classic Mayhem worship, just with better musicianship. At times, it has a strong Punk Rock feel(like the opening track "Sacrilege of Death"), which helps prove my long standing argument that Black Metal was intended to be Norwegian Nationalist Punk Rock before all the real Metal musicians took the genre away from Varg and his cohorts. The production is classic Black Metal: very loud and every instrument and the vocals can he heard, but it's also very distorted and dirty. I love the guitar tone on this record in particular.
Any self-respecting fan of Black Metal is going to dig this. Honestly, if you claim to be a Black Metal fan and don't like this record, you are either a poser or a cynical Black Metal hipster. Which is it?