Sound — 10
After releasing a couple of demos in the previous years, Sodom came up that year with "In The Sign Of Evil", which remains, to this day, one of the most intense metal releases ever. I mean, the songs on this album doesn't even have solos and are composed by 3 or 4 riffs. Totally raw and primitive, aggressive songs that amaze any metal fan. The guitar's sound is very raw, so is the bass' sound, and the drums sounds like it's gonna explode. Unarguably, a mark in the metal music, a big influence on almost all the metal genres that followed later, like Death Metal or Black Metal. It's very different from Sodom's later releases like "Agent Orange", especially if the subject is technical skills. Probably the lack of them is one of the things that make this record sound so great and raw. You can hear a lot of Venom influence. It actually sounds like Venom decided to play their songs faster. It's just 20 minutes of pure metal going through your ears. The only song here which is more slow-paced is "Sepulchral Voice", which has a fast riff too. A metal classic. The album was planned to be a full length, but because of lack of money to afford a full record, the band had to pick 5 songs, that were released on the EP. The unreleased songs were recorded in 2007 and released with the 5 tracks from this EP, in the album "The Final Sign Of Evil", just like it was meant to be in 1984. Sure thing, Sodom picked the most amazing songs to record, back then.
Lyrics — 9
Really different from Sodom's later releases, which focuses more on war themes, "In The Sign Of Evil" focuses on satanic and evil themes, and it really fits in the sound of the record. There's nothing very amazing at them (gets really funny at some points like "Blasphemer": "masturbate to kill myself"), and neither they are well written like in their previous albums, but like I've said before, fits perfectly in the sound of the album, which sounds really brutal for 1984 (and still sounds brutal for today). The lyrics helped Sodom to be placed among bands like Hellhammer and Venom in what they call "first-wave black metal", which helped to build the bases of what black metal would become. Angelripper's voice here is all about growled vocals blaspheming evil lyrics along the riffs, and even in the fast parts, where he have to sing it really fast (like in "Blasphemer"), the lyrics are audible, and this is a mark on every Sodom album.
Overall Impression — 10
This album is amazing, sure thing essential on any old-school metal fan collection. A complete classic. I would point "Blasphemer" and "Sepulchral Voice" as the most amazing songs on this record, but all 5 tracks here are. They are just intense, non-stopping metal, and before you realize it, you're banging your head to them. What I really love here is how it is so simple and yet so amazing, making early metal masterpieces with 3 riffs, nothing more. Sounds magical. If someone steal this from me, well... I'll send the knight in the cover of the album to hunt down who stole it from me and I'll tell him to place that sword in a place where the robber would not like at all.