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Mactatus- The Complex Bewitchment

Band Homeland: Norway

Band Homepage: http://members.tripod.com/Mactatus/Mactatus1.html#

Label Homepage: http://www.napalmrecords.com/

Released in 2000 on Hellion Records (licensed by Napalm Records), "The Complex Bewitchment" is the amazing follow-up to “Provenance Of Cruelty”, and is another epic effort from this long-standing and always brutal Black Metal band. Hailing from Norway, Mactatus is currently a 6-man lineup, with roots going as far back as 1989 in the Norwegian Black Metal scene. They stand as yet another example of a totally worthy band that has received little recognition from the Metal scene overall, even though they were there when all this started.

"The Complex Bewitchment" is an excellent title for this album, as it gives an accurate description of the music contained therein. From flat-out and relentless hammering blastbeats to beautiful and haunting synths, I find myself startled between arrangements even though I have listened to this album probably 200 times since I have bought it. "The Complex Bewitchment" holds true to the more current Black Metal movement, of raspy but (mostly) understandable vocals, moving keys, crushing blasts of doublekick, and some outstanding guitar work.

The guitarists on this album are Ty and Gaut. I'm not familiar with any of their other works, but on "The Complex Bewitchment" they do have some moments that make one notice that they are very talented and capable.

On drums is Mjolne, who holds his own as a drummer on this album, but doesn't have any moments that are truly above and beyond, he is just keeping the standard of modern Black Metal drummers...which means he's really good.

Forn, who is also in another of my favorite bands Svartharid, does the key work. The keys are used as an atmospheric foundation in most cases, but in a few instance they take the lead, giving the song a very Dimmu Borgir feel to it. The bass work by Mefistfeles is adequate, it's bass...what can be said about bass? It's either there or it's not. In this case, it is there but has no remarkable moments. The vocals by Hate Rodvitnesson are just brutal, ranging from deep and guttural Death style to near-screeching grim and hateful Black, and the combination keeps my listening experiences fresh and interesting no matter how many times I spin this disc.

To close this review, I have to say that were Mactatus to get better promotion and publicity, you would see them climb rapidly. With catchy riffs, solid hooks, deep melody, and an image as dark and grim as any band could want, I see no reason why Mactatus could not rise to the proportions of Dimmu Borgir. Once again, a highly capable band is held back by circumstance.


Ornament Of Pettiness
Another Dimension
The Passage (To The Kingdom Of No Return)
Speak The Word Of The Winds
With Excellence
Iron Handed
Complexity In Vain
Dance Of Might