Legacies Of Frailty by WoeRelease date: September 29, 2023
Label: Vendetta Records
Back to being a one-man black metal band for the first time in almost fifteen years, on the surface this shouldn’t make a huge amount of difference to the sound of Woe, given Chris Grigg has remained the mastermind throughout. And yet Legacies Of Frailty has definitely lost a large dose of the magic that has made the outfit such a highly respected driving force within the US black metal scene ever since their debut.
Lacking is the operative word here. All the pieces are in the right places, but somehow the final product is missing that special spark. Opener ‘Fresh Chaos Greets The Dawn’ comes roaring out with blast beats thundering and riffs whipping around at breakneck pace, combining to create a bleak atmosphere of hateful intent: it sounds good, a promising start for sure, yet the record quickly becomes something of a monotonous blur, a dark shadow with little contrast.
Legacies Of Frailty is still a decent album for the most part, however it never rises above that base level. And given what Woe have conjured before, that makes this something of a disappointment. This could have been produced by any of a countless number of grim black metal outfits, the blandness of the finished project the most horrifying aspect on display.