Troll- Neo-Satanic Supremacy

By Chris Dahlberg

Published on Sunday, April 4, 2010

Most black metal fans that know who Nagash is probably know him from his involvement in Dimmu Borgir or The Kovenant, but they may not know that he actually has his own band named Troll that predates both of those groups. After putting the project on hold for awhile, Nagash recruited an all new lineup and released a new effort entitled Neo-Satanic Supremacy. While Troll’s last album had a lot of industrial elements, Neo-Satanic Supremacy returns to familiar symphonic black metal that at times sounds pretty close to what Dimmu Borgir was playing when Nagash was a part of the group. But despite the slightly retro vibe, this is an effort that still feels relevant in 2010 and fans of the genre are sure to enjoy it.

One of the first things that is noticeable about the material on this album is that all of it sounds as though it could have come from the 1990’s symphonic black metal scene (although the production values are a bit more modern). This proves to be both a good thing and a bad thing for Troll, as while it certainly helps to establish that this style of music still feels relevant in this day and age listeners are going to find themselves constantly comparing the songs on this album to ones they have heard before. Don’t get me wrong, there are genuinely good hooks on Neo-Satanic Supremacy that are sure to please fans of the genre but there just isn’t enough unique elements that will really help people to distinguish this effort from the others once they have finished listening.

When it comes to vocals, Nagash certainly excels. His screaming style is extremely powerful and on par with many of the other black metal singers out there. This gives Troll’s material a much needed burst of energy and helps to keep many of the songs interesting for their entirety. In addition to this, while Nagash doesn’t vary his vocal delivery that often he is able to change his pitch just enough that it doesn’t seem too repetitive. Hopefully he can find a way to make the instrumentals stand out a bit more in the future, as the vocals are definitely where they need to be.

Anyone who chooses to pick up Troll’s Neo-Satanic Supremacy certainly won’t be disappointed and will enjoy listening to it but there just isn’t enough that will make them want to come back to it frequently after that initial listen. If Nagash can find a way to maintain this symphonic black metal base and add some more distinguishable elements then Troll could definitely create some noteworthy material. But for now, it’s an above average group that listeners who are sick of how many of today’s symphonic black metal bands sound may still want to investigate.

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