Thursday, April 18, 2013

... CARDINALS FOLLY "Strange Conflicts of the Past" (Album review)

This new release from Shadow Kingdom rds is in fact a complilation of old material from CARDINALS FOLLY, a mighty Finnish trio which deliver occult classic Doom since 2004 (more exactly under the name of The Coven  until 2007 when things started to be serious and implied a more striking name...).

Cardinal's Folly is one of those great bands which get too few attention from the actual overcrowded scene which tends to turn more and more into extreme or retro sounds and forsake more traditional METAL  with guts and heart, melody and harmony ! If this wouldn't be such a regrettable situation, then please tell me why bands like GALLOW GOD, ORODRUIN, EVANGELIST, MODERN FUNERAL ART, PAGAN ALTAR, ARKHAM WITCH or CARDINALS FOLLY (just to name a few) remain all too/very confidential... ?

On the other hand there has always been inexplicably underrated bands and suddenly one day... many many years later, someone or something can give a new destiny to a burried entity who will become cult, play at German festivals specialized in old Metal warriors and see hallucinating prices increase on e-bay for a copy of their unprobable first recording !!!

Even if things are maybe long to take off, I wish all those bands a brighter and more immediate destiny, but the most essential is to leave a trace, perpetuate a style, a spirit, through some excellent DOOM Metal and on that point the abilities of the Finnish band are more than effective.
Other bands names cited with them were nothing except hazardous, beyond their love for Heavy (Doom) Metal, a great part of them share a passion for HP Lovecraft and/or black magic horror, puting their musical moods in harmony with the lyrical and visual sides.
Starting by the french M.F.A who share another similarity with C.F., vocally wise, though Mikko Kääriänen is more steady and penetrating, the gothic overtones are patent too (but they're just vocal) giving at times a nice theatrical dramaturgy to the overall.

Released one year and a half after their debut album "Such Power is Dangerous" and while waiting for their sophomore recorded at the end of this month, this (compilation) album is collecting songs from their both (sold-out) eps, 2 songs (+ intro) from "Heretic's Hangover" (save the very long "uncharted seas" already on the debut) and 4 songs of "Orthodox Faces" (means its integrality), not forgetting a song from their early days under The Coven's name and a cover of Kraftwerk 'the Model' amazingly doomed to the core.

Otherwise, obviously the mid-tempo metallic pace is a basic rule of composition, filled with harmony, melody and an ominous lyrical flow... This is classic Doom-laden Heavy Metal with many elements of the 80's - not just for the twisted melodic solos, some occasional high pitched screams typical of that period, but also for its rough epicness, tinged at times with a slight black metal nastiness  like for example on "Blood Axis Raiders" - which sounds like a mix between Bathory and Mercyful Fate !!! I honestly regreted that this awesome song was not included on their debut, it's a fuckin good surprise to get it here as a real highlight. In no case, something sounds forced and outdated, Cardinal's Folly craft songs with tense crushingness  and dynamic mixed together - which can remind an old local legend named Reverend Bizarre, if that could give a more glorious and recent reference to some irreducibly skeptical doomsters !

It's a good thing to know that the new album will be released this year too but this "Strange Conflicts of the Past" present a real interest to catch all the essence of this highly respectable band - whose discography complete you must end with !

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