Review: Vader – Tibi Et Igni

Location: Olsztyn, Poland
Genre: Death Metal
Released: May 30, 2014
Format Reviewed: FLAC
Feature: Global Conquest – Recent Releases

By: Kris Kotlarik

To me, Vader represents a box of Twinkies. Like Twinkies, they don’t necessarily get better with age, but they don’t sound any worse over time. Plus, they can survive anything, including a series of lineup changes. The same members that brought us Welcome to the Morbid Reich in 2011 are back for more, and the results are pretty much what anyone would expect from Vader at this point.

Vader’s trademarks on Tibi Et Igni (Latin: For You and Fire) are all present and accounted for: Swift and merciless tracks; the one-channel guitar leads that segue into mayhem; lyrics mostly relating to death, hell and anti-religion; brief but awesome solos, etc. I could stop right now and say “If you like Vader, you’ll enjoy this album,” but what’s the fun in that?

The best all-around track, without question, is “The Light Reaper.” From start to finish, it’s a fast, pummeling track that reminded me of my favorite Vader album, 2002’s Revelations. Two songs come close; “Where Angels Weep” and “Abandon All Hope” are absolutely crushing tracks that never slow down. The only problem is that both songs clock in at less than 150 seconds. These songs would’ve been perfect for me as I would try to break my personal record on the 800 meter run or 200 yard freestyle, but I don’t think my high schools would have taken kindly to that.

Three tracks feature pointlessly long and unoriginal orchestral intros: Album opener “Go To Hell;” “Hexenkessel;” and “The Eye Of The Abyss.” Once the intros are over, those songs are just as good as the ones mentioned above, and the orchestral effects are at least somewhat relevant on the back half of “The Eye of The Abyss. “The End” closes off the album with a grandiose death metal march that took a couple of listens to appreciate, but it’s a great ending track.

“Armada On Fire” (which I initially misread as “Amanda On Fire,” and couldn’t help but wonder if this song was about a groupie or ex-girlfriend or something) has dual vocals throughout the song that don’t really work on it. “Triumph Of Fire” has an annoyingly repetitive chorus, and “Worms Of Eden” didn’t add much to the album.

There are also two bonus tracks, and neither of them are sung in English. “Necropolis” sounds like an 80’s hair metal song and is a total waste of time. “Des Satans Neue Kleider” is a cover from German electronic group Das Ich. Vader managed to turn this off-kilter track into a respectable doom metal tune that sounds significantly different from the rest of the album.

Overall: Doesn’t hold a candle to Revelations and isn’t as strong as Welcome to the Mordid Reich. But it’s still Vader, dammit. 

Rating: 3.5*

Additional thoughts: I’m not sure what the best part about seeing Vader live in Germany back in 2012 was: The crushing set, or the Imperial March being played as the band was exiting the stage. Tough call. Either way, they’re worth the price of admission.

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