Cradle of Filth – The Manticore & Other Horrors (Review)
Review by Jack Foley
RELEASED in time for Halloween, Cradle of Filth’s The Manticore & Other Horrors is every bit as nightmarish as their name suggests.
It’s a collection of stories on monsters, personal demons, Chimeras, literary fiends and world-enslaving entities to blame but a few that exist to be grandiose and slightly abhorrent.
But the best that can be said about it is that it contains a good intro… a cinematic instrumental that leans more towards classic horror scores than the head-pounding metal that follows. The Unveiling of O sets you up for something that never quite happens… fun.
Instead, the seeds of rot are set from the opening riffs of The Abhorrent, which seems an aptly named track if ever there was one. Admittedly, the band do seem to be having fun within the track, mixing in crazy orchestral flourishes (a la Meat Loaf).
Yet they never stray far from their signature sound of extreme metal… and this time they really push the envelope sonically and thematically.
Manticore, the ravening title track, is a song about a beautiful mythological horror that comes to be feared as the disfigurehead of foreign occupation in the Indian provinces, while Illicitus and Pallid Reflection bare the sweet ingredients of vampirism and lycanthropy.
For Your Vulgar Delectation and Frost On her Pillow are woven perversely into grim fairytales, while the aforementioned The Abhorrent and Siding With The Titans both extol tentacular Love-craftian values.
Just occasionally, there’s an intro that threatens something interesting, such as the organs of Frost On Her Pillow, which also contains some of the album’s better riffs, or the foreboding piano chords of Sinfonia which eventually segue into annoying chiming church bells.
But in the main this is a horrific listen – and not in a good Halloween way.