GOD DETHRONED - The Christhunt (COLD BLOOD Industries - LP 1992)
Some time ago a friend of mine started a discussion on Facebook about the best Dutch death metal albums of all time. It was something quite interesting to read, because I’ve never hidden a fact that Dutch death metal scene belongs to my favourites and I truly worship many bands from there. A lot of obvious titles were mentioned in that discussion, like Pestilence, Gorefest, Sinister, Asphyx or Altar albums... but I was surprised that I was first to name God Dethroned's "The Christhunt" LP. For me personally it's top five of best death metal records from Holland and I truly love this album. I like some later God Dethroned albums also, like "Ravenous" or "The Grand Grimoire", but none of them sounds so vicious and brutal as the debut. And this is why I love "The Christhunt" so much – it is the sheer aggression, viciousness and evil, dark atmosphere of this album what suits me well. The future records may be better recorded, be better technically, but also more melodic and have more memorable songs, but they miss that relentless and obscure harsh aspect of old school death metal, which I worship and which "The Christhunt" has in its every fuckin fragment.
So, I do return do this record often, even though I only have it on picture LP - and I am yet again surprised that no one had yet decided to put it on vinyl in more proper way. I do hope it will change one day... until then it's "The Christhunt" on picture LP, which is OK, as the sound is not so bad and besides, this album simply fuckin kills.
I don’t necessarily like to make comparisons, but if I was going to compare "The Christhunt" to other bands then it would be a bit of early Sinister, Altar, Deicide, Vital Remains… all these maniacally evil, malicious and harsh sounding type of bands, which recorded some splendid satanic death metal albums in the early 90’s. A lot of "The Christhunt" sounds fast, aggressive and intense. They make many transitions and changes of the pace in every song, so it all sounds nicely diverse, even if sometimes it can be a bit predictable or even naïve, as the band tend to repeat some schemes quite often, especially in the fast parts. But despite that, I like it, because God Dethroned had some killer riffs here, I love the blasphemous aura of this music and Henri Sattler’s vocals (with a lot of reverb on them) sound morbid and evil as hell! Occasionally God Dethroned slows down and actually they do have also a bit of Asphyx gloominess in these slow parts, like in “Infernal Sights of a Bloody Dawn (Morbid Rites)” for example, which definitely belongs to my favourite tracks on "The Christhunt". Check that doomy riff and mournful guitar lead – they could easily been taken from “The Rack”.
Several truly killer songs go through the album. “Infernal Sights of a Bloody Dawn (Morbid Rites)”, “Christ Carnage”, insanely malignant “Necromagnon” or “Unholdin of Hewe”. I’m not saying that "The Christhunt" is the most brilliant death metal album of all time, but it sounds solid, it had everything that you should love about satanic death metal of the old days. Mind though that if you’re fan of later God Dethroned, especially albums like “The Lair of the White Worm” or “The Toxic Touch”, then this debut may sound way too rough and primitive for you and it may not necessarily be your cup of piss. But try it, who knows, maybe you’ll like it anyway.
Standout tracks: “Infernal Sights of a Bloody Dawn (Morbid Rites)”, “Christ Carnage”, “Necromagnon”, “Unholdin of Hewe”.
Final rate: 85/100