CELTIC FROST – Monotheist

CELTIC FROST - Monotheist


Century Media
Release date: May 30, 2006

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The career of the Swiss/American Doom trio Celtic Frost can most definitely be described as “extraordinary.” The band was formed by what was left of the legendary Death/Black Metal forefathers Hellhammer in 1984, and through a total of 6 releases –- all having reached the Billboard list — the band are among the originators of the phenomena that became Extreme Metal, which is now taken for granted.

The band’s 22-year existence has been a turbulent one, with member changes, personal problems, and internal and external disagreements. Now, 16 years after their last full-length album, the trio of Tom G. Warrior (born: Fischer) on guitars and vocals, Martin Eric Ain on bass and vocals, and Franco Sesa (who joined the band in 2002) are back with what is well over an hour of dark, gloomy, unpleasantness.

Monotheist has namely become an album that is downright uncomfortable to listen to –- the harsh vocals feel like hot sparks to the ear, and the discordant riffs cut like blunt knives through cold flesh. Clichéd and poetic, but still true –- this is a very challenging album to digest. This is to some extent due to the production, courtesy of the band, together with Peter Tägtgren (Hypocrisy, Pain), certainly making for a big part of the album’s gloomy sound.

Some songs, like “Ground” and “Obscured,” are a bit easier to comprehend, and both range among the album’s highlights, together with the groovy opener “Progeny,” the Black Sabbath-ish “Os Abysmi Vel Death,” and the gruesome/glorious (whatever suits you) 14-minute opus “Synagogae Satanae.” This composition is not one for the faint-hearted, and has to be listened to a whole lotta times before it is possible to even get the slightest idea aboout what’s going on.

Darkseed, a German Goth band, gave their 2005 release the title Ultimate Darkness.
They were wrong.
This is “Ultimate Darkness.”


  • Torgeir P. Krokfjord

    Torgeir was a reviewer here at Metal Express Radio. After hearing Malmsteen's "Vengeance" on a guitar mag CD at the age of 12 or 13, he began doing hopeless interpretations of Yngwie licks and it just took off from there. After shorter stints at other zines he was snatched to Metal Express Radio in 2003. Alongside Yngwie, Savatage, WASP, Symphony X, Blind Guardian, Emperor, Arch Enemy, In Flames, Opeth, Motörhead, Manowar, and Queensrÿche are a quick list of musical faves. Torgeir is also guitarist in the Heavy/Prog/Thrash outfit Sarpedon.

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