"Unlimited" (Candlelight USA; 2004)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

Susperia don't break any new ground with "Unlimited," but who the hell cares? The CD still kicks some major ass.

Sounding like it was recorded by the bastard child of Testament and Dimmu Borgir, "Unlimited" will explode from your CD player throughout its ten-track, 45-minute running time and never show a hint of slowing up.

My favorite tracks are the opener, "Chemistry," with its symphonic wall of destruction and the edgy "Home Sweet Hell," with its great guitars and irresistible tempo. 

Susperia are nothing if not consistent and "Unlimited" shows this band is as strong as ever. A little more variety in the style of their songs might be the only thing lacking here. Still, these guys need to get on an Ozzfest bill somewhere, somehow because that kind of exposure will surely bring them the levels of success that they deserve.

Susperia: Tjodalv - drums; Athera - vocals; Memnock - bass; Cyrus - Guitar; Elvorn - Guitar.

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"Vindication" (Nuclear Blast Records)

Reviewed by TBJ

Okay, I gave high grades to Susperia's debut CD and, although the new one wasn't exactly what I expected, I still feel totally pleased. I said Athera's vocals would be their strongest point if he injected more styles to his repertoire, and I guess he listened (or read). This time around, the black metal screams are almost gone and substituted with an aggressive style more reminiscent to what Pantera or Slayer would come up with.

But what brings originality to Athera's style is the melodic sensibilities that prevail throughout most of the songs. The songs themselves are a lot more identifiable from one another - one may sound totally blackish ("Anguished Scream," my favorite song, goddamn those blast beats!) while others might sound totally thrash ('Petrified"). Others have some death metal tendencies and one that really stands out is the Metallica-Meets Sabbath "Dead Man's World." You will see what I mean when you listen to it. 

I haven't listened to this album to the point of overkill but I noticed there aren't any bass flourishes like last time. Bummer. The guitar riffs are stronger and more direct; I just gotta love those technical flourishes they do in some songs. The drums - well, what can I say - this guy just kicks so much ass. Tjodalv is proving himself to be more than just a mere black metal drummer. The grooves he plays throughout are awesome, diverse and technical, but always with the song itself in mind. Actually, this pertains to all the instruments. The song is first and foremost and it will only spell success in future endeavors. 

I am looking forward to hearing more from these guys and, although it's almost impossible for them to come to my country at this point in their career, I would just drool and convulse if it were to happen. Susperia are here to stay, and I'm loving every minute of it.

Susperia: Tjodalv - drums; Athera - vocals; Memnock - bass; Cyrus - Guitar; Elvorn - Guitar.

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"Predominance" (Nuclear Blast Records; 2001)

Reviewed by TBJ

After finding out about this band in a magazine (a very cool one at that) {Editor's note: but not as cool as Rough Edge}, I decided to check out their CD, "Predominance." Since the ads pointed out the band was made up of ex-members of Dimmu Borgir, Old Manís Child and Satyricon I thought, "What the hell, this shit might be good." 

Well, I can honestly say I was pleasantly surprised. Although the band is not forging any new ground musically (sounding not unlike our pals Dimmu and OMC, but a bit more technical), props should be given to Athera, the group's vocalist. Athera seems to have a lot of potential and thus might be the key to this band's future. He seems influenced by many different styles of vocals, from blackened screams to deathly growls, doom-y clean vocals, and Halford-esque screams. The latter doesn't show up often, but when they do, they bring a "rock" element to the fore that few black-metal bands posses.

The guitars are crisp and clear, as are the bass stylings. The drums and overall compositions are technical, yet catchy.  

Susperia has all the ingredients to become something more; letís just hope they know that.

SUSPERIA: Athera - vocals; Cyrus and Elvorn - guitars; Memnock - bass; Tjodalv - drums.

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright © 2001 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 11 Sep 2022 13:46:19 -0400.