Following their debut EP that was released earlier this year Misanthropic Rage release their debut album "Gates No Longer Shut". Misanthropic Rage are a progressive black metal two piece project from Poland and "Gates No Longer Shut" is one of 2016’s most interesting and original debut albums.
While the album has its share of heaviness this isn’t an album that relies on brutality, it is heavier in terms of atmosphere and emotion. When describing the sound black metal is a good place to start but there is so much going on with this release and in 2016 black metal is a pretty big umbrella when describing music. The opening track 'In A Blind Dimension' is a pretty straight forward track which invites the listener in and lets you now from the keyboards you get the feeling that something a little different is going on. The wonderful title track with its melodic clean chorus shows that the band has a lot more to offer than a typical Black or death metal album. 'I The Redeemer' has a 70’s rock feel and an occult atmosphere it brings to mind Arthur Brown or even Black Sabbath at their most experimental especially on the bluesy solo’s that are scattered around the album. The brilliant album closer 'I Took My Fate In My Own Hands' again carries on with this at the beginning before kicking into a later day Satyricon style stomp. The track twists and turns and builds up and falls again it’s a trippy 8 minutes that’s finishes off the album nicely.
All in all this is like a less ferocious Behemoth, if you take "The Satanist" for example and take that albums atmospherics and more melodic parts or if you think if Schammasch stopped fucking around and just got on with the song, it would sound a little like Misanthropic Rage. In fact when it comes to comparisons with other bands Misanthropic Rage above all remind me of Celtic Frost. Not so much that they sound like them because what did Celtic Frost really sound like? They never did two albums that were alike. In terms of attitude, approach and spirit they are Celtic Frost down to a T, they are not restricted by any boundaries and they let the music go where their emotions take them.
This is an extremely interesting album and as avant garde or progressive it can be it’s also very accessible after a few listens some of the tracks on here will haunt you in your sleep.