Cradle of Filth "Hammers of the Witch"

The lords of black metal return with another installment of unrelenting evil on their latest dose on Hammer of the Witch. While not exactly reinventing the wheel, Cradle of Filth find themselves churning a slab of aggression to their ruthless catalogue.
     I've disengaged from the band for a few of the past albums and not for no reason. I've always expected more from the devilish vets, but it doesn't seem like the group is capable of maturing enough to showcase any progress aside from production levels. The band really hasn't changed much since my dad smashed my VHS of PanDaemonAeon, which I still haven't watched to this day. That's not to say that the group isn't a master of their craft or that I'd smash this album the same way my dad did when he lost his mind when he saw the satanic level of content captured here. 
     If you're looking for textbook black metal with just enough evil to make your dog wet the rug, then you're certainly in the right place. But the road essentially leads to evolution and maturation, which doesn't really seem to present itself here or in any of Cradle's loaded archives throughout the past twenty years.
     I felt as if this would be the one to separate the band from their previous efforts and really catapult themselves into the 2016 festival season where I am eagerly anticipating their participation announcement on next year's installment of Download in Donnington. Not sure if that announcement will happen or not, but this album doesn't exactly have me going bonkers for their set. In the meantime, if you're looking for a solid wrath of fury, take the time to dig the tracks and find exactly what you've been indulging in throughout their entire career. 

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