Crowned in Terror is the fifth album by Swedish Death/Thrash Metal Band, The Crown. The album was released on Metal Blade Records in 2002. On the Crowned in Terror album, Tomas Lindberg formerly of “At the Gates” is on vocals instead of original vocalist Johan Lindstrand. The Crowned in Terror album has 11 tracks.
The band lineup for Crowned in Terror:
Tomas Lindberg – Vocals
Marko Tervonen – Guitars
Marcus Sunesson – Guitars
Magnus Olsfelt – Bass Guitar
Janne Saarenpää – Drums
The Crown is a Death/Thrash Metal band from Trollhättan, Sweden somewhat in the vein of “At The Gates” and “The Haunted”. Their music and lyrics have death, negative, and anti-religious themes (targeting Christianity). They originally went under the moniker of “Crown of Thorns”, which they were called from 1993-1997. They changed their name to The Crown when another band (a rather shitty band), also called Crown of Thorns from America claimed that name.
The Crown Crowned in Terror: The Review
Crowned in Terror, which I bought when it first came out in 2002, blew me away on first listen. The brutality, awesome riffs, lyrical, musical structure, and the catchiness of this album is what got my attention. The album influenced me to buy more music from bands playing this style. I sought out albums from bands such as; At The Gates, The Haunted, Unleashed, Dismember, Entombed, Carnage, Therion, and Grave. The best death metal comes from Sweden, although some might argue but I prefer Swedish Death/Thrash Metal bands. Those bands all have badass buzz-saw sounding riffs.
The Crowned in Terror album explodes on you starting with the title track, “Crowned in Terror”. The riffs and machine gun sounding double bass drumming hit you immediately, Vocalist, Tomas Lindberg destroys your ears with his monstrous growl/scream. The amazing drumming by Janne Saarenpää and the crazy brutal melodic death/thrash metal riffs don’t let up on you on this song. Tomas Lindberg’s voice is awesome in this song and throughout the rest of the Crowned in Terror album. The brutality and the catchy melodic sound continue on the next track “Under The Whip”. Hammering riffs and brutal drumming start the song off, following with Tomas Lindberg screaming his head off like a demon. A thin guitar riff plays in the background as Tomas growls in the chorus “sadistic bondage of mankind”, “under the whip-a hatred blind”.
The next song, “Drugged Unholy” is a godly rebel song. The blast beat drumming, phenomenal riffs; melodic solos makes Drugged Unholy the best-structured song on the Crowned in Terror album. It also helps that it has the coolest lyrics of them all. I just love when Tomas Lindberg roars/screams the rebel anthem.
Drugged Unholy Lyrics:
Addicted to the sins of the devil
Drugged unholy – I am of cancer
Take my mind – Kill every answer
Preacher won’t you just shut up
‘Cause I don’t give a f**k
No I don’t care – I don’t care
On and on, on and on, on and on
Beyond the pain – Beyond the grave
Beyond the law – Beyond it all
Driven – Drugged unholy forever!
Tomas Lindberg sounds possessed on this song. The epic Drugged Unholy song ends with Tomas snarls, “So f**king gone now – This is all madness”!
“World Below”, which is similar to Swedish Black Metal Pioneers, Bathory - Enter the Eternal Fire song. It has a similar atmosphere, tone, tempo, and timing. The theme of World Below is about giving yourself to the “Lord of Darkness”, with a misery-induced suicide. The badass riffs most likely were stolen and altered a bit. I love the beautiful guitar solo at 3:30 that’s like a stairway to hell.
“The Speed of Darkness”, is another personal favorite of mine from the Crowned in Terror album. The song wowed me when I first heard it. It is another perfectly structured track like Drugged Unholy. Much like the name itself the riffs and drumming blast at you with the speed of a demon. The drummer, Janne Saarenpää perfectly times his chaotic drum fills. The Speed of Darkness only slows down at the 2:53 mark with an unbelievable reference in the guise of a clever little guitar riff. The guitar riff is instantly recognizable as the theme from the David Hasselhoff 1980′s TV show, “Night Rider”. I don’t know what effect pedals they use or guitar technique, but it is amazing that the guitarist for The Crown can pull off the theme from that great show. The track ends with Tomas growling these great lyrics.
The Speed of Darkness lyrics:
Riding with the Speed of Darkness
Faster than the speed of light
Together with the Speed of Darkness
Shining on through the night
The Speed of Darkness
Hell – For the helpless ones
I take and make it my heaven
Hell – For the helpless ones
I am at one with Darkness
“Out for blood”,” (I Am) Hell”, “Death Is the Hunter”, are the next three tracks and they continue the greatness of this unbelievable album. There’s no slacking with the shredding death/thrash assault on your ears. Marcus Sunesson and Marko Tervonen continue to rip your mind apart with their amazing leads and guitar solos. “Satanist”, is another great alcohol induced frenzied rebel anthem for the new century. Janne Saarenpää will make buildings collapse with his unrelenting drumming. The song is a bit tongue and cheek with its tribute of walking the “Left Hand Path”.
The Crowned in Terror album ends in excellent fashion with the final track, “Death Metal Holocaust”. This song has a dual vocal attack approach since previous singer Johan Lindstrand makes a guest appearance. The intro buildup is somewhat similar to the Venom song, “In League With Satan”. The Death Metal Holocaust song has a bit more chaos than the others. It has less thrash elements and more of a Death Metal brutality.
The Crown Crowned in Terror: Closing thoughts
Crowned in Terror is an unbelievable album and one of the greatest extreme metal albums of the new century. It took elements from the At the Gates album, “Slaughter of the Soul”, a little bit of Kreator’s “Endless Pain” and “Pleasure to Kill”, added some Slayer “Reign in Blood” thrash metal guitar virtuoso, and created an unrelenting epic death/thrash masterpiece. It has no filler tracks and is extreme metal perfection. The Crown has other great albums you can check out, specifically “Deathrace King”, which is almost as perfect as the Crown in Terror album. Death Race King also features Tomas Lindberg, but in guest mode on one song. Tomas Lindberg is a legend in Death/Thrash Metal and in my opinion he is far superior to Johan Lindstrand.
The Crown in Terror album was re-recorded under the name “Crowned Unholy” with Johan Lindstrand on vocals. I consider the release pointless because the re-recording sucks and I pay it no attention. I guess it was re-recorded, because some fans were torn between Johan and Tomas. They wanted to see what the great album would sound like with Johan Lindstrand on vocals. The production is also superb on the Crown in Terror album. A lot of the Swedish Death Metal greats have a rather unique production of their various albums. Recording studios such as; “Sunlight Studios” and “Studio Fredman” are responsible for that Gothenburg and Buzz saw guitar sound that many of the great bands from Sweden have. I recommend to fans of metal to buy the classic Crowned in Terror album. You will not be disappointed.
The Crown Crowned in Terror Review: Done by Rancel
The Crown – Under The Whip (Live) (Johan Lindstrand on Vocals)
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