Drawing Down the Moon
By Beherit 1993 Spinefarm Records

Being one of the the first second wave black metal albums from Finland, Beherit's Drawing Down The Moon deserves praise for being the first, but they also deserve praise for the greatness and influence of the music. Black Metal would not sound quite the same without this release, as although it never influenced the Norwgeians or really the Swedes, it certainly influenced the American bands a lot, and probably many of the French and European bands.

Heavily influenced by Brazil's Sarcofago and Sepultura along with Venom and Celtic Frost among others, Beherit create a kind of insane black metal with some death metal influences, particularly in the absolutely scary vocals. This album is about true Satanism, the band themselves were aligned with the OTO and the Church Of Satan, they were serious about this, and the music is serious as well, creating a true Satanic feel.

Ambience is a big word for this record. The band create a dark Hellish and otherworldly feel by the combination of deep evil sounding riffs, a strange kind of disconnect between music and vocals and small touches of eerie keyboards, which drone in and out like cosmic sounds. You will notice the vocal thing though. They create a really strange feeling by the insane vocal performance and the way it fits into the music. Guitars are kept low in the mix, making them feel kind of far away, while drums are high, and vocals the highest. The vocals sound like they were distorted a bit, they are almost inhuman, sounding sometimes like the demon from The Exorcist had walked into the recording sessions. They are whispered, incanted, screamed and grunted into the microphone in hideous fashion.

There are ambient pieces spread throughout, often opening songs. The songs are usually kept with the same tempo throughout, and sound like, in their construction, they are meant to be rituals, meant to call Satan or a demon of some sort. Perhaps if you take the actual meaning of the title of the album, the whole album is supposed to act as a ritual. The bands later albums would be totally ambient ritual music, so this idea probably isn't too far off.

This album is one of those records which was ahead of any time, and will forever be one of the recordings people can point out to show just how evil music can get. Punishing, difficult and scary, yet somehow addicting, like being addicted to the Sins of Hell, this album should be on every black metal fan's must-listen list. You may not like it, but with any luck it will scare the shit out of you. True cult.

Track Listing
1. Intro (Tireheb)
2. Salomon's Gate
3. Nocturnal Evil
4. Sadmomatic Rites
5. Black Arts
6. The Gate of Nanna
7. Nuclear Girl
8. Unholy Pagan Fire
9. Down There...
10. Summerlands
11. Werewolf, Semen and Blood
12. Thou Angel of the Gods
13. Lord of Shadows and Goldenwood