Kreator - Hordes of Chaos
Melodic Thrash
10 songs (38'27")
Release year: 2009
Kreator, SPV
Reviewed by Alex
Major event

Embarking on the review of the latest Kreator I tried to promise myself I would not compare the album to the early classics, but instead to take an album for what it is, an older band trying to capture the moment of today. I also tried to pledge not to pigeonhole the band trying to define the genre Kreator plays on Hordes of Chaos, or drawing parallels with other bands. You’ll be the judge of how I have done, especially if you consider yourself an old Kreator fan.

It is true that Hordes of Chaos is not Endless Pain or Pleasure to Kill. But was it meant to be? It seems that after more than 20 years in existence Kreator felt altogether angry, mellow, inclined to be more melodic, but also a little tired, uncertain, trying to search for the magic of old days gone by. The result – a solid, professional album, from the experienced professional band, who is still relevant today, as they remembered what they stood for, even though some modern influences showed through. If you are not dead set on only accepting Kreator for furious face-peeling thrash, and think that NWOBHM-styled melodies are cool in combination with old Teutonic flaying, those will learn to appreciate Hordes of Chaos, even if in time. For every harmonious intro or quick melody, there is a ripper of a riff (title track, Warcurse). And if here and there we have a darker, more downtuned, almost Trivium-like melodic breakdown (To the Afterborn), we also have juicy smashers (Escalation) or drier crispier oldschool thrash tracks (Radical Resistance).

One thing is certain, at this point in their career Kreator is not going to be satisfied with simple collection of riffs upon riffs piled upon and played fast (see the latest Destruction for that, I know I am breaking my promise). Instead, having been pissed off with the world around them, Mille Petrozza and Co. want their songs to stand for something. As a result, their songs have many faces, which change almost kaleidoscopically. Amok Run begins with a softer melodic intro and clean vocals, only to reach self-instigated hysterical heights and crush into ending philosophical tragic solo. The story about a young runaway could not have unfolded any better. Kreator appear to be moody, and they sound like it, often bi-(or even multi)polar in their expressions. The menacing stomp of To the Afterborn flies of its hinges, the same unsettledness continuing on into the closer Demon Prince, the grand finale punctuated by an outstanding solo. If Absolute Misanthropy and Destroy What Destroys You do sound a bit filler to me, I certainly sensed enough emotion on Hordes of Chaos to last me a full album.

As far as the tired aspect of their work, Mille does not sound aggressive enough in thrashy parts nor is he melodic enough where it is called for. The decision to record the basic tracks in live setting also may have something to do with the fact the band is keen on trying to recapture the old spark. If you are confident in the music, it should not have been necessary. The guitars are muddied up a bit, instead of sounding crunchy and crisp.

Never to be turned off by the melodic aspect of thrash (I could be in the minority here), Hordes of Chaos suits me well. Kreator have molded their sound and songwriting approach to the ominous nature of the world we live in today. Always in tune with the state of humankind, regardless if you agree with Mille’s lyrics or not, Kreator is well deserving of your attention, whether you are a young fan who has never heard them, or a grizzled veteran not too happy about the band’s more “experimental” years.

Killing Songs :
Hordes of Chaos, Warcurse, Escalation, Amok Run, Demon Prince
Alex quoted 85 / 100
Other albums by Kreator that we have reviewed:
Kreator - Coma of Souls reviewed by Bar and quoted 94 / 100
Kreator - Pleasure to Kill reviewed by Bar and quoted CLASSIC
Kreator - Phantom Antichrist reviewed by Thomas and quoted 90 / 100
Kreator - Terrible Certainty reviewed by Kyle and quoted 95 / 100
Kreator - Extreme Aggression reviewed by Aleksie and quoted 95 / 100
To see all 13 reviews click here
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