Ragnarok: Psychopathology

Norwegian black metallers refuse to push the boat out

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Having been in existence since 1994, and proving reasonably prolific in terms of album releases ever since, Ragnarok are from a similar school of thought as bands such as Tsjuder and Urgehal.

Thus, unlike many bands from Norway who headed into more experimental or progressive areas as the years passed, Ragnarok have stuck to their guns and despite the suitably muscular 21st-century production, their material is as rooted in the mid-90s as the corpsepaint, bullet belts, inverted crosses and fire that appears in their promo photos.

Nothing wrong with that, of course, but while Psychopathology is well performed and easy to listen to, it’s neither the band’s strongest moment nor an album that’s likely to win over those unfamiliar with them.

While Dominance And Submission recalls Marduk’s forays into S&M territories, for the most part this never ventures far from the ‘True Norwegian’ template and though well performed, there simply isn’t enough excitement to stand apart from the many similar-sounding albums.