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At the Gates of Hell
At the Gates of Hell
Genre: Metal
  •  Track Listings (10) - Disc #1


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CD Details

All Artists: Bewitched
Title: At the Gates of Hell
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Osmos
Release Date: 9/6/1999
Album Type: Import
Genre: Metal
Style: Death Metal
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1

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CD Reviews

Blackened retro-thrash done the right way
Daniel Hinds | Bellevue, WA USA | 11/30/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Bewitched are one of my favorite retro bands for a number of reasons. For one thing, they don't just pick one band to emulate, or even one style. References to everyone from Mercyful Fate to Ozzy to Sodom can be heard; elements from classic metal, thrash and black metal all co-exist in their evil brew. The imagery and lyrics may be diabolical in the extreme, but it is more the Venom school of blasphemy than any of the modern black metal disciples. "Sabbath of Sin," which first saw the light of day on the band's live release, Hell Comes to Essen, kicks off the festivities. After some Slayer-esque guitar squealing and backwards vocals, vocalist Vargher cries out "Spit on the cross!!" and the band plunge into a classic Bewitched riff. Anyone familiar with this band's previous work will be right at home, as they have done little to change their attack. "Black Mass" features a great deal of cool harmony guitar bits, very much in the classic Priest/Maiden tradition. "At the Gates of Hell" is another great tune, complete with a shout-along section in the middle, although it does suffer a little from Bewitched's one failing - repetition. It is less noticeable on this record than some of their previous outings, but the band has a tendency to repeat the fairly simple choruses a few too many times on some songs. "The Sinner and the Saint" sounds like Maiden's "Rime of the Ancient Mariner" filtered through the nine planes of Hell. Bewitched have a peculiar 'fun' atmosphere to their music. It isn't happy-sounding per se, but it has that vibe that the band are having a blast playing it, not unlike Witchery. And, while some might disagree with me on this point, it doesn't sound contrived at all. At the Gates of Hell, to my ears, is the result of three guys who have an obvious love for classic heavy metal in all its glory and are doing their damnedest to re-create that feeling in 2000. If you're a fan of Bewitched, then this album is a must and it won't disappoint. If you have one or two of their previous releases and think they are just okay, then you can probably pass on this one, as it is right in line with those releases. If you've never heard Bewitched but are curious, this album is probably your best bet to start with, as it has the best production yet and probably the most diversity in terms of the songs themselves."