ACHERON - Lex Talionis (FUNERAL INDUSTRIES - LP 2013)
Personally I am not kind of person, who needs to have all albums in his collection in their first press versions, whether it’s CD and LP. I don’t really mind having some – even the most classic – records in their second or even third versions, as long as these reissues are done well and keep several things intact. For example I don’t like if there’s big interference in the original sound. Then I don’t mind if they enhance the booklet with some additional info, photos, story, etc – these things are actually really cool, but I hate if they change the artwork on the cover. Finally I don’t mind if they add some bonus tracks, as long as they’re not some useless live or rehearsal songs, which are sounding like shit and normally are not even good enough to be on a crappy bootleg. And so on and on… Here I have a reissue of Acheron’s excellent second LP titled “Lex Talionis”. It has been re-released – along with the debut LP “Rites of the Black Mass” – on vinyl by Funeral Industries in 2013. I had to get them, as I always considered these two LPs to be killer and really wanted to have them on vinyl. But I just must say that the new covers for both LPs plus the whole layout for “Lex…” are all just bad. As I mentioned earlier, I hate if they change the original cover and both “Lex Talionis” and “Rites of the Black Mass” got new artwork, which is awful; the graphic is not good at all plus I hate that it is so colourful, plus the inlay for “Lex Talionis” hasn’t got any of the photos, which were on the original CD version of the album… Ahhh, definitely the visual side of “Lex Talionis” should have been done better by Funeral Industries. I don’t wanna say that I loved the original artwork of the album, because it wasn’t anything special, but still it was better than this new one and more so, it is the original cover! OK, this LP version of “Lex Talionis” has one more change – it contains one bonus track: “Prayer of Hell”, which I think was taken from “Messe Noir” demo and the question why didn’t they include the entire demo here? It would be much more awesome, I think. Anyway…
Bashing the failure of the entire new layout of “Lex Talionis” is one thing, but luckily it doesn’t disturb in listening to the album, which in my opinion is truly excellent and probably – along with “Those Who Have Risen” – belongs to my favourites, speaking of the Acheron catalogue (mind though that I don’t know all the releases by this band!). This is just awesome piece of satanic death metal; an album, which creates such an evil and malevolent aura that it freezes blood and scares the feeble. Acheron have their own sound and style; there’s no denying that; already the first LP showed that and “Lex Talionis” only proves how special this band has always been. Some of you may not necessarily like that whole Church of Satan thing, which surrounds it, along with calling Satan in every song, but damn… blasphemy is the aim of this music! Personally I cannot imagine someone, who would listen to Acheron just for the sake of the music, however good it is. And if there’re any bands in death metal, whose music was as evil and satanic, then along with Vital Remains and the early Deicide, it is Acheron. I love the atmosphere of their music, but more so I just totally love these songs. Acheron plays quite slow sort of death metal, sometimes their riffs are almost doomy, but that allows them to perfectly create the proper atmosphere and to have this great feeling. Some of these riffs are almost catchy and really force the listener to perform a maniacal headbanging, so utterly possessing they are. Some of these songs also have incredibly memorable choruses, so again you’ll get hooked and I dare to say that you’ll scream some of these lyrics every time you listen to this record. Finally there’re those awesome vocals of Vincent Crowley… the man is a beast, his ghoulish vocals are fantastic, fit the music perfectly and only deepen the cold, evil feeling. Great! And what about those intros, which are included between each death metal songs? They’re performed by Peter H. Gilmore, so you know it is deadly serious stuff and damn, they really freeze blood and sound incredibly well – way, way better than those from “Rites of the Black Mass” LP.
I have been listening to “Lex Talionis” all day and I just cannot stop. This LP sounds amazing and I am happy it was re-released on vinyl, even if they fucked up the whole layout. The music is strong as hell and such anthems as “The Entity”, “Voices Within”, “Legions of Hatred” and “Enter the Cover” are pure masterpieces of satanic death metal. I strongly recommend you to give this LP a listen… you know, it has originally been released in 1994, so almost 20 years ago, but it still sounds so damn well, the production is still really fuckin heavy and awesome, so this LP ages really well. Get it now then!
Standout tracks: “The Entity”, “Voices Within”, “Legions of Hatred”, “Enter the Cover”
Final rate: 90/100