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CARDINALS FOLLY - Defying The Righteous Way

Release date March 6/20 (Rafchild Records / Bandcamp)

We last ran into Cardinals Folly on their split with Lucifer's Fall

that ending up being one of The Mighty Decibel's best EPs of 2019 (refer review below). So, with expectations obviously high, I turned up my trusty death deck and cranked the sub-woofer to make sure that I was primed and ready for a Finnish doom metal beating. Lo and behold, the first three tracks on this fifth full length (covering the initial sixteen minutes) actually exceeded my predictions. Great songwriting here, tempos mixed to perfect effect, while Count Karnstein's warble vocals narrate interesting tales of religious atrocities (the burning of witches, the actions of twisted priests and the like).

Unfortunately, that momentum is stalled somewhat by the plodding, eight-minute "The Great Santur" that follows, which never really takes off, and is followed by a short-instrumental-with-speakover piece that's merely there. However, Cardinals Folly regain their feet with "Ultra-Violence" and "Last House on the Left", heaving riffs delivered with rumbling intensity. The epic, nine-minute "Strange Conflict" completes the release, starting out slow and ominous before picking up the pace for a rockin' mid-section.

While not being a perfect record, Defying The Righteous Way is a mighty fine release that will appeal to doom metal traditionalists who love to wallow in oaken riffage and bass blubbering.

Faves: "Deranging The Priest" and "Witchfinders", top notch stuff that deserves your attention.

(7.5)

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