Album Review – Super Satan / Menetekel (2020)

An incendiary album of German Black Metal overflowing blast beats, pushing sounds and aggressive riffs that will let us all slide down the abyss piece by piece.

With a variety of beautiful, dreamy tracks and silence shattering sounds split into ten hypnotic tracks with a total playing time of over 57 minutes, Menetekel, the debut full-length opus by an infernal Kaufbeuren, Germany-based Black Metal duo comprised of vocalist Stefan Bauer (Disgusting Perversion) and guitarist Julian Gruber (Disgusting Perversion, Pestilent Reign, Running Death, Taste of Desolation) that goes by the curious name of Super Satan, brings to our ears a fast, hard-riffing and overall unconventional style of Black Metal, being highly recommended for fans of bands like Der Weg einer Freiheit and Der Rote Milan. Supported by the heavy kitchen of Nikita Kamprad (Der Weg einer Freiheit, Illusion of Strength) on bass, who also produced the album, and Sebastian Unić (Crimson Death, Pestilent Reign, Kâhld, Hysterie) on drums, Super Satan take no prisoners in Menetekel, with their driving blast beats, pushing sounds and aggressive riffs letting the audience slide down the abyss piece by piece and leading them through the end of all days, all of course sung in their mother tongue German.

Get ready to be dragged down to the scorching pits of the underworld in the phantasmagorical intro Menetekel, or “warning sign” in English, setting the stage for Super Satan to crush our souls in Zwiespalt (“conflict”), with Julian extracting sheer obscurity from his wicked guitar while guest Sebastian delivers traditional blast beats, resulting in a feast of classic and modern Black Metal spearheaded by the demonic roars by Stefan. Then we have another brutal round of Black Metal the likes of Marduk and Immortal in Einklang (“unison”), sounding absolutely demonic and pulverizing from start to finish, with Sebastian going berserk once again on drums while Nikita hammers his bass furiously, whereas the strident, piercing riffs by Julian are the main ingredient in the infernal Mondglanz (“moonlight”), bringing some Hardcore and Grindcore nuances to their already vicious sonority and, therefore, being perfect for slamming into the pit while also presenting groovier and heavier moments.

Dämmerung (“dusk”) is an Atmospheric Black Metal extravaganza led by the electrifying guitar lines by Julian while Stefan gnarls in a dark and anguished manner, remaining sluggish, bleak and melancholic throughout its five minutes of sheer obscurity, and following such venomous tune we’re treated to Wolkenbruch (“downpour”) and its almost 10 minutes of a fantastic hybrid between old school Black Metal with contemporary Melodic Black Metal. Furthermore, Sebastian sounds even more boisterous on drums while very rhythmic at the same time, with Stefan’s deep roars bringing endless hatred and fear to the overall result. Then cryptic sounds and tones permeate the air in Auferstehung (“resurrection”), morphing into a furious explosion of Black Metal infused with Symphonic Black Metal nuances with Sebastian once again adding his share of dementia to the music, while Stefan keeps barking and screaming manically.

Hammering their flammable instruments nonstop, the band pierces our ears and minds with the scorching Weltenbrand (“world fire”), also sounding and feeling atmospheric and epic. In addition to that, you can sense some resemblance to the most vicious creations from Neue Deutsche Härte, while Julian sounds truly infernal with his dark riffing. After such high level of obscurity, it’s time for a hurricane of modern-day Black Metal blasted by Super Satan in Ritual, showcasing razor-edged guitars, fulminating drums and the always visceral gnarls by Stefan, while Nikita and Sebastian bring thunder to the sonority with their sonic weapons. Lastly, blending the imposing sounds by bands like Cradle of Filth, Dimmu Borgir and Emperor, the band fills our ears with hatred and evil in the closing tune Ur, where those German metallers display all their dexterity and passion for the underworld for over eight minutes.

The creativity and darkness flowing from German Black Metal always amazes me, and with Super Satan it couldn’t have been any different than that. Those two talented musicians and their henchmen simply nailed it already with their debut release, which is by the way available for a full listen on YouTube and on Spotify, bringing forth a very cohesive, austere and incendiary fusion of the most diverse styles of Black Metal. Hence, don’t forget to give them a shout on Facebook and on Instagram, and to purchase your copy of such excellent album from their own BandCamp page or from the Thanatoskult’s BandCamp page, as well as from Apple Music or from Amazon. As already mentioned, Menetekel is the perfect soundtrack to the end of everything, proving once again why Black Metal made in Germany is and will always be one of the most interesting and breathtaking subgenres of extreme music.

Best moments of the album: Einklang, Wolkenbruch and Ritual.

Worst moments of the album: None.

Released in 2020 Thanatoskult

Track listing
1. Menetekel 1:15
2. Zwiespalt 6:02
3. Einklang 3:49
4. Mondglanz 3:00
5. Dämmerung 5:00
6. Wolkenbruch 9:38
7. Auferstehung 5:45
8. Weltenbrand 7:17
9. Ritual 6:57
10. Ur 8:32

Band members
Stefan Bauer – vocals
Julian Gruber – guitars

Guest musicians
Nikita Kamprad – bass (session)
Sebastian Unić – drums (session)

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