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After releasing several albums of creative, talented and macabre gothic metal, Cradle of Filth started to slip disappointingly towards a mainstream bastardisation of their sound that would be sadly realised over the course of several years. 'From the Cradle to Enslave' is the start of this transformation, an E.P. of lacklustre covers, needless remixes and below par original material that pales in comparison to its illustrious predecessors 'Dusk and Her Embrace' and 'Cruelty and the Beast.'
The original material isn't entirely bad, but it's obviously screaming for acceptance by the readers of mainstream metal magazines such as 'Kerrang!' in its dilution of the band's gothic sound with radio-friendly structures and a tamed performance that tries desperately to be catchy. 'From the Cradle to Enslave' is over-repetitive and 'Of Dark Blood and F**king' is merely a horrible mess of the elements that previously made the band's music so engaging, from inappropriate keyboards and operatic female vocals to an overlong and tedious drum intro.
The re-make of 'Funeral in Carpathia' is inoffensive but pointless, and an overly clinical production job robs it of the atmosphere of the 'Dusk and Her Embrace' original. The cover material is a mixed bag: their take on the Misfits is disappointing to say the least, the band's gothic guitar style and rasped vocals failing to live up to the glory of 'Earth A.D.' in any way, Massacre's 'Dawn of Eternity' is malformed into a gothic piece that contrasts too sharply with its extreme elements, and their take on Anathema's classic 'Sleepless' sounds equally out of place, and spoils all the best bits. At least I didn't have to endure the alternative version of the E.P. that comes with the band's attempt at a techno remix with the song 'Pervert's Church,' that would just be hideous.
1. From the Cradle to Enslave
2. Of Dark Blood and F**king
3. Death Comes Ripping (Misfits cover)
4. Sleepless (Anathema cover)
5. Funeral in Carpathia (Be Quick or Be Dead version)
6. Dawn of Eternity (Massacre cover)
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 From The Cradle To Enslave
2 Of Dark Blood And Fucking
3 Death Comes Ripping
5 Pervert's Church (From The Cradle To Deprave)
6 Funeral In Carpathia