Release Date: Oct 14, 2016
Record label: Peaceville Records
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Heavy Metal
Ever since they first slicked on the corpse paint in 1986, the seminal Norwegian black metal band Darkthrone have raged an unrelenting war on the Puritanical mores of the West: devout Christianity, blind patriotism to both God and Country, the status quo’s broader distrust of anything rock. Of course, as the original espousers of “True Norwegian Black Metal” and former associates of Burzum’s gun-toting, white nationalist frontman Varg Vikernes, they’ve had to swat off many an accusation of racism. Considering Darkthrone’s anti-establishment mindset in tandem with their controversial past, it’s easy to label them outcasts–and yet, in 2016, Gylve “Fenriz” Nagell and Nocturno Culto are hardly pariahs.
For 25 years, Darkthrone have been delivering straightforward, old school, punk-influenced black metal, and that's exactly what they do on this latest release, Arctic Thunder.The group churn out eight tracks' worth of old-school fury, and it's clear that although they have aged a bit even since their last recording, 2013's The Underground Resistance, they definitely still have it and can hold their own. They still write catchy songs, with the exception of some slower, doomy forays, such as the sustaining riff on the sung "Tundra Leaf."That being said, this is definitely still a record to check out if you are a diehard fan of the band. They have offered up another record of catchy heaviness for fans to head-bang to.