Antipope – House of Harlot

I often complain that I don’t receive a wide enough variety of music to review as sometimes, it seems that everything just sounds the same. Then, this record turns up, and I sincerely don’t know what to call it. There is almost no way to place Antipope in a single genre as this Finnish combo merges a wide variety of styles into a record that sounds ambitiously schizophrenic and irreverent, but has its flaws.
“House of Harlot” ranges from melody-laden, gothic undertones to aggressive mosh grooves and occasionally sways into a corrosive blend of industrial and black metal, and although the constant musical shifts sound mesmerizing and fitting in places, sometimes those transitions get a bit awkward and tend to break down the record’s flow. Antipope sound most effective when they’re churning intense and catchy grooves and layering some compelling guitar harmonies overtop as in “Morning Star” and “Rapeman” for instance. Another weak aspect of “House of Harlot” is singer’s Myllykangas terrible tendency to yell in an exaggerated impersonation Dr. Frank-N-Furter from “The Rocky Horror Picture Show”, which certainly detracts the potential of some songs.
While musical irreverence is always a welcoming feature in the current metal scene, Antipope only partially pulls it off as their versatility sounds a bit disjointed at times. If they could let their disparate musical influences just flow naturally and not force them into their sound, they may be able to produce something truly groundbreaking next time around. (5/10)

Luca Niero