Mortiis: The Great Deceiver

Electro-industrial goblin makes a comeback

The Great Deceiver

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‘Era 0’ of Mortiis has apparently now begun.

After a six-year studio absence, the former Emperor bassist has returned with a heavier sound and even angrier lyrics. He’s done black metal, dark ambient and even synth-pop, but his latest takes the stomping electro-industrialism of The Grudge to the next level. Yes, The Great Deceiver is the Norwegian gothic goblin’s first release since 2010’s digital download Perfectly Defect, and it’s catchy as hell. There are still elements of The Smell Of Rain with the perky electro of Too Little Too Late but on the whole, this 12-track album packs a harder industrial rock punch than any of its predecessors.

The Great Deceiver takes influence from industrial-driven dark music; think Ministry circa Land Of Rape And Honey and Rabies-era Skinny Puppy, with a little :wumpscut: thrown in.

The moodiness of Hard To Believe and the Bowie-meets-NIN vibe of Sins Like Mine contrast perfectly with the full-on vitriol of thundering opener The Great Leap and the Rob Zombie-esque Demons Are Back. Mortiis are in their electronic prime.

Natasha Scharf
Deputy Editor, Prog

Contributing to Prog since the very first issue, writer and broadcaster Natasha Scharf was the magazine’s News Editor before she took up her current role of Deputy Editor, and has interviewed some of the best-known acts in the progressive music world from ELP, Yes and Marillion to Nightwish, Dream Theater and TesseracT. Starting young, she set up her first music fanzine in the late 80s and became a regular contributor to local newspapers and magazines over the next decade. The 00s would see her running the dark music magazine, Meltdown, as well as contributing to Metal Hammer, Classic Rock, Terrorizer and Artrocker. Author of music subculture books The Art Of Gothic and Worldwide Gothic, she’s since written album sleeve notes for Cherry Red, and also co-wrote Tarja Turunen’s memoirs, Singing In My Blood. Beyond the written word, Natasha has spent several decades as a club DJ, spinning tunes at aftershow parties for Metallica, Motörhead and Nine Inch Nails. She’s currently the only member of the Prog team to have appeared on the magazine’s cover.