Some people claim this as one of the best US black metal albums. While being solid release, I wouldn't say this is their best, and even less that this was one of the best US black metal releases (yes, there is good US bm). Black Funeral is one of the first US black metal bands releasing their first demo in 1994.

This is the bands debut and isn't industrial black metal, but more in the vein of norwegian black metal. The band doesn't really innovate on this album but the music is solid. There is enough tempo variety to prevent the album from becoming dull and some cool riffs.

The production on this album is its weakest link. It is too bassy and warm. On faster parts, the drums pretty much bury the riffs underneath, which isn't helped by vocal department, which being very solid, is very high on mix and buries riffs even further.

The artwork of my copy is a bit goofy. The front cover is a painting of Vlad Tepes, while being very evil guy, the image is pretty off on the album. As the album is whole package to me, not only the music, the artwork ruins some of the atmosphere for me. On front cover there is the best Black Funeral logo that they have had, having some bats with it, too. A shame they haven't that logo anymore.

While being solid album, their next release, Empire of Blood is superior in my opinion. It has pretty much same songs with different titles on them but the production (or the lack of thereof) and different cover artwork make it better than this in my opinion. If you are new to Black Funeral, or their older stuff, I recommend you to get Empire of Blood. I'd recommend this to those who are already fans of the band.

7 / 10