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Ov Hell - 'The Underworld Regime'

About.com Rating 2 Star Rating


Ov Hell - The Underworld Regime

Ov Hell - The Underworld Regime

Prosthetic Records

The Bottom Line

Forgettable and unintentionally funny debut from Norwegian black metal “supergroup.”
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  • Good for a quick laugh.


  • Everything else.


  • Released April 13, 2010 by Prosthetic Records.
  • King ov Hell is the former bassist for Gorgoroth; vocalist Shagrath works with Dimmu Borgir.
  • Ov Hell was formed in July 2009 after Gaahl left the band God Seed.

Guide Review - Ov Hell - 'The Underworld Regime'

Gaahl’s decision to walk away from his former Gorgoroth bandmate King Ov Hell’s musical project might have been the best in his musical career. King instead recruited Dimmu Borgir vocalist Shagrath and the pair hastily wrote an album titled The Underworld Regime that is hopelessly juvenile and horribly executed.

The pair poses on the cover like the spawn of Klingons and Menudo. They offer songs with unintentionally hilarious lyrics like “I am my own holocaust” (huh?) and they pack it with more Exorcist style sound effects than a B horror film.  Even a trigger-happy censor like Sarah Palin would get a kick out of this album.

It’s easy to figure out why The Underground Regime was released despite its flaws. King and Shagrath both played considerable parts in bands that have written noteworthy black metal. Both of them have been on a downswing of late.

King tried to take the Gorgoroth album from Infernos and lost in court; Dimmu has been on a creative slide despite their growing popularity. Combining the two just didn’t work outside of “Invoker,” which feels like a castoff from Gorogorth’s last era.

A few clever producers tried to get a band together on television for the show SuperGroup, but combining true (if misguided) talent Ted Nugent with bottom-feeders like onetime Biohazard bassist Evan Seinfeld didn’t work. Black metal’s version of a supergroup hasn’t worked, either.  This album is of hell, alright. It’s hell on your ears.

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Disclosure: A review copy was provided by the publisher. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.

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