Cold Lake (album)

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Cold Lake
CelticFrost ColdLake.jpg
Studio album by Celtic Frost
Released 1 September 1988
Recorded Summer 1988
Venue Berlin, Germany
Studio Hansa Studios, Sky Trak Studios
Genre Heavy metal, glam metal[1]
Length 44:57
Label Noise
Celtic Frost chronology
Into the Pandemonium
Cold Lake

Cold Lake is the fourth studio album by Swiss extreme metal band Celtic Frost, released on 1 September 1988 by Noise Records. It features a new lineup, reformed by bandleader Tom Warrior with newly joined musicians Oliver Amberg, Curt Victor Bryant and Stephen Priestly. Despite it being marketed to exploit the mass appeal of glam metal, the album has more of a traditional heavy metal sound.[2]

The album was not popular with the group or its fans and is no longer available to buy, making the album much sought after by collectors.


After a disheartening end to their "One in Their Pride" tour in Dallas, Texas, Tom Warrior decided to end the band. However, in mid-1988, at the request of Oliver Amberg and with the support of producer Tony Platt, the band was resurrected, although with an entirely new line-up (Oliver Amberg – guitars, Curt Victor Bryant – bass, Stephen Priestley – drums and additional vocals). Even though the project had the cooperation of Warrior, he held little interest in it and so allowed Amberg to do most of the musical composition.


Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars[2]
Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal 8/10[3]

Upon its release, the album was universally slammed by music critics and the band was labeled a sell-out by its core fanbase. The appearance of the band was remade with teased hairstyle to look like popular glam metal acts such as Mötley Crüe. The earlier works by the band had been underground thrash/death/black metal. Modern reviews are more positive.[4] AllMusic reviewer Bradley Torreano wrote that Cold Lake is "still the worst Celtic Frost album", but that it "really isn't that bad" and the "vibrant heavy metal here... is longing to be rediscovered by fans."[2] Canadian journalist Martin Popoff considered Cold Lake a "good record", filled with riffs "awesome and sinister" and lyrics about street-level sin "almost scarier" than the abandoned black metal ones.[3]


Amberg was quickly fired after the release of the album. When the band re-issued its back catalogue in 1999, they purposely omitted Cold Lake.[5]

Some of the tracks appear on the compilation album Parched with Thirst Am I and Dying but in a different, heavier mix that Tom Warrior supervised.

Tom Warrior had this to say about Cold Lake:

Tom has also said it was the "absolute worst I could do in my lifetime." He has also called it "an utter piece of shit" and "possibly the worst album ever created in heavy music."[7]

Track listing[edit]

Side one
No. Title Lyrics Music Length
1. "Human II" (Intro) Tom Gabriel Warrior Warrior 1:06
2. "Seduce Me Tonight" Warrior Warrior 3:18
3. "Petty Obsession" Warrior Oliver Amberg 3:17
4. "(Once) They Were Eagles" Warrior Amberg, Curt Victor Bryant 3:39
5. "Cherry Orchards" Warrior Amberg 4:19
6. "Juices Like Wine" Warrior Amberg, Bryant 4:17
Side two
No. Title Lyrics Music Length
7. "Little Velvet" Warrior Warrior 3:40
8. "Blood on Kisses" Warrior, Michelle Villanueva Warrior, Villanueva 3:29
9. "Downtown Hanoi" Warrior Amberg 4:15
10. "Dance Sleazy" Warrior, Martin Eric Ain Amberg, Bryant 3:32
11. "Roses Without Thorns" Warrior Bryant 3:26
CD edition bonus tracks
No. Title Lyrics Music Length
12. "Tease Me" Warrior Amberg, Warrior 2:47
13. "Mexican Radio" (false live version, with crowd noise added to the mix) Marc Moreland, Stan Ridgway Moreland, Ridgway 3:32


Celtic Frost
  • Tom Gabriel Warrior – lead and backing vocals, rhythm guitar, effects
  • Oliver Amberg – lead and rhythm guitars, effects, backing vocals
  • Curt Victor Bryant – bass, effects, backing vocals, lead guitar on track 11
  • Stephen Priestly – drums, backing vocals
Additional musicians
  • Michelle Villanueva - backing vocals, additional lead vocals on track 5
  • Brian Hewett - rap on track 1, backing vocals on track 2
  • Xavier Russell - backing vocals on tracks 1 and 11
  • Celtic Frost, Tony Platt - producers, arrangements, mixing at Conny Plank Studio
  • Thomas Steeler, Dexter - assistant engineers
  • Karl-Ulrich Walterbach - executive producer


  1. ^ Christe, Ian (March 2000). "News". CMJ New Music Monthly. No. 79. p. 63. ISSN 1074-6978. 
  2. ^ a b c Torreano, Bradley. "Cold Lake - Celtic Frost". AllMusic. Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  3. ^ a b Popoff, Martin (1 November 2005). The Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal: Volume 2: The Eighties. Burlington, Ontario, Canada: Collector's Guide Publishing. p. 68. ISBN 978-1894959315. 
  4. ^ Bennett, J. (16 February 2011). "Justify Your Shitty Taste: Celtic Frost's "Cold Lake"". Decibel. Retrieved 2017-02-12. 
  5. ^ Christe, Ian (March 2000). "News". CMJ New Music Monthly. No. 79. p. 63. ISSN 1074-6978. 
  6. ^ "Tom Warrior on ''Cold Lake''". Retrieved 2012-05-12. 
  7. ^ Ferris, D.X. (18 March 2010). "Talkin' Triptykon with Tom G. (Warrior) Fischer". Metal Retrieved 2017-01-30.