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Behexen – The Poisonous Path album review

Finnish black metal veterans Behexen unleash new album

Whereas Swedish black metal bands tend to venture into more melodic and even heavy metal territories, their Finnish neighbours have always had a cruder, more barbaric edge, as if to reflect the natural harshness of their creators’ mother tongue.

Despite their quite raw early works, Behexen have become the exception to the rule of late, even with the prolific Shatraug – also of Horna, Sargeist and tons of other ‘pure’ BM projects – on board since 2009.

Confirming the grandiose turn that was 2012’s Nightside Emanations, their sixth full-length is an epic 57-minute journey once again mixed at Tore Stjerna’s Necromorbus studio in Stockholm that furthermore cements their foray unto Swedish territories. Even if it immediately brings Watain to mind, The Poisonous Path also retains a part of its original DNA (the most intense track here, the closing Rakkaudesta Saatanaan, is sung in Finnish), while reaching a near-cinematic level that manages to find the right balance between tradition and ambition – almost earning Behexen the ‘progressive’ tag in the process.