Marduk – Iron Dawn EP (Regain Records)

Friday, 22nd March 2013
Rating: 7.5/10

Around the time of 1999’s Panzer Division Marduk, there was little debate as to who the fastest black metal band on the planet was. It was Marduk, obviously, Given that the album in question had literally all blast beats, it made sense for Morgan Steinmeyer Håkansson and crew to switch gears, which of course led to the decidedly less-awesome La Grande Danse Macabre(2001) and World Funeral (2003). After a few lineup switcheroo’s halfway through last decade, the Swedes have righted the course, allowing them to give the ‘ole faster-than-fuck black metal sound the old college try on the 3-song Iron Dawn EP.

Released as a stopgap EP to setup the band’s recently-completed North American tour, Iron Dawn goes for the throat on “Warschau 2,″ which features a barrage of blast-beats and war samples, including the always cool plane “divebomb” sample. “Drumbeats of Death” follows a similar path, with some quality riff choices from Håkansson (dude is one BM’s best riffers), while the experimental “Blood and Sunflowers” works in a more industrial vein.

Considering the rousing success that was 2009’s Wormwood, Marduk is clearly back on track. While they’re sometimes an afterthought in the black metal discussion, the band’s lavish attention to all-out blasting black metal cannot and will not be denied on Iron Dawn.

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