The Dutch horror black metal band is releasing their new album: Franckensteina Strataemontanus, an opus which preserves all the recipes of the previous albums while bringing new blood.

The album mixed by Robert Carranza (Marilyn Manson) opens with an almost religious intro. The listener is directly immersed into the atmosphere as Carach has always done so well over the course of their albums, with an often exacerbated but never “too much” theatricality.

The unique atmosphere created by the choirs and the keyboards in “Here In German Woodland” therefore opens the hostilities.

Without transition, the drummer Namtar continues on its double pedal with the title “Scourged Ghoul Undead”, which will delight fans of a more “raw” Carach Angren. Remember that Namtar is now replaced by Michiel van der Plicht (God Dethroned). In this song, we are even entitled to deliberately dissonant parts of the flute.

The eponymous title which comes in third place, is without any doubt the song with the biggest industrial metal influence. The throbbing piano adds a chilling effect to this song however it is much less complex in its structure than the others.

Without the characteristic voice of Seregor, one could think that they are listening to the latest single from “Ghost” while listening to the title “The Necromancer”. A title which has the merit of breaking the monotony that risks settling down when we approach a style as precise as that of the Dutch band.

In “Sewn for Solitude”, the violin strongly recalls the classical era: it looks like a ball where Mozart himself would have taken possession of the piano. The song is emotionally very strong and the feeling of loneliness is obvious, thanks to the chromatic descents in particular.

“Operation Compass” is quite close to what the band has already done in the past, this time with a typically death metal voice.

“Monster”, the song dedicated to Frankenstein but also more generally to all monsters, brings the Marilyn Manson influence to its climax. We can feel in Seregor’s voice all the horror and terror of the monster who becomes aware of himself.

The album continues with “Der Vampir von Nürnberg”, which strongly recalls certain titles from the album Lammendam (2008). Carach Angren explains here the story of the necrophile who dug up women to open their throats and drink their blood. The classic influence we mentioned in the title “Sewn for Solitude” is back her but this time more in the romantic period, especially in a very effective transition.

“Skull with a Forked Tongue” is a good example for those who love guitars. The guitar playing is indeed agile in addition to being very precise. A short solo, the only one on the album, even appears there.

“Like a Conscious Parasite I Roam”, the last song on the album (not counting the bonus track “Frederick’s Experiments”) is much quieter than the others and concludes this album by setting an atmosphere worthy of a Tim Burton movie.

Carach Angren puts us into a new nightmare

Frankensteina Strataemontanus is a “total work of art”, as Wagner would have said. Carach Angren’s music has this almost magical characteristic of “giving the viewer to see” something that he can only hear, by immersing him into a narration and a particular atmosphere. The Dutch use recipes that work (very creepy samples, piano and shrill violin, quasi-opera orchestrations, etc.) while incorporating industrial metal influences and a wide variety of vocals.

I admit being a difficult listener: I rarely like an album the first time I listen to it, but it immediately won me over. My only little regret concerns the mix, which in my opinion lacks depth, for a music which, however, asks a lot. Maybe more … And it’s an impression that runs through the entire album.

We recognize the typical style of Carach Angren, but even after six albums, they still manage to innovate, retaining the symphonic black base while sliding industrial influences. Frankensteina Strataemontanus is a gut-wrenching album. And despite the difficulty of staying at the top after albums as successful as “Lammendam” or “Where the Corpse Sinks Forever” for example, Carach Angren manages to show that the reaper is still there!

Valentine Cordier