Review: Slaegt ”The Wheel Label” [Ván Records]

Review: Slaegt ”The Wheel Label” [Ván Records]

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Anyone seeking a winter warmer best leave Slaegt alone. There’s a cold blast blowing through their new album The Wheel and the temperature never really rises from the moment ‘Being Born (Is Going Blind) sets out their bracing stall.

But while their first roll of the demonic dice appears coated in Black Metal spirit the creative Danes have much more to offer as we find out quickly on the following number Masician” in which some early atmospheric riffage gives way to more frenzied fretwork as Slaegt inject a real tempo thrust.

The band’s 2017 debut album Domus Mysterium generated plenty of interest and The Wheel is set to keep things rolling in the right direction for Slaegt. It showcases the band’s flexibility and commitment to creating a sound to which they feel suited rather than rushing headfirst into a pre-ordained pigeon hole. Within these seven songs you’ll find no shortage of gyrating grooves, hammer size hooks and on a song such as “Citrinitas” solos big enough to down a hawk.

“V.W.A.” is one of the heavier numbers, launching with a serious detonation and then continuing to make merry in the ensuing debris until the tidal wave of balls out metal is surpassed by a melancholic pattern of grooves as Slaegt make the transition from rough to smooth. They are one of those bands who don’t quite look how you would imagine. What we get is flowing locks, open shirts and a general 70s vibe although any lazy lackadaisical thoughts have no place when they kick in with a venomous number such as the turbo-charged “Gauntlet of Lovers”.

Everyone knows their job in Slaegt and executes it to near perfection. Sticksman ‘CC’ Nielsen works as hard as anyone with his robust percussive pounding although riff cavalier Anders M. Jørgensen is right up there too. Olle Bergholz has a firm grip on his bass while also providing support vocals to frontman Oskar J. Frederiksen whose theatrical tones give the band a real infectious quality.

The album’s title track offers a storming finale and it comes as no surprise to learn that The Wheel received the accolade of ‘Album of the Year’ in one Danish newspaper recently. 2019 promises to be a big year for the Copenhagen quartet with slots already confirmed for Brutal Assault in the Czech Republic and Roadburn Festival in the Netherlands.

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Paul Castles
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