Mortiis – The Great Deceiver (Omnipresence Productions)

Genre: Industrial Metal

The goblin mask may have gone, but Håvard Ellefsen – aka Mortiis – is still a menacing presence and by the sounds of The Great Deceiver, he’s an angry chap.

The album is Mortiis’ first since 2010’s middle finger to the music business, Perfectly Defect, which was available as a free download.  It also marks the end of a five year hiatus, during which he questioned his desire to continue in the industry he’d been part of for two decades.

However, any notion that the Norwegian is a spent force is immediately blown away by The Great Leap, this album’s explosive opener: pulsing, mechanised beats, gritty, urgent riffing and a furious, caustic vocal assault from Mortiis combine to administer a very thorough beating indeed. The Ugly Truth and Scalding the Burnt, meanwhile, ape the high octane industrial turbo rock of Ministry, and Feed the Greed just begs to be pumped out of a huge soundsystem… preferably in some post-apocalyptic nightclub full of cyborgs.

Even when the band slows things down – such as on the emotionally charged Bleed Like You – there’s a stream of dark energy crackling just under the surface, and where the electronica dial is turned up, it enhances, rather than dilutes, the album’s power.

Catchy and accessible, with some intriguing twists and turns thrown into the mix, The Great Deceiver is one hell of a comeback from Mortiis. He’s been missed…

RUSHONROCK RATED: 8.5/10 Motorized