Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length

In Aeternum - The Pestilent Plague review

Annihilaytorr

In Aeternum - The Pestilent Plague review
April 23, 2007, 07:15:08 AM
In Aeternum - The Pestilent Plague(2000)




Coming as a product of the late 1990’s, in a world where the well of ideas for extreme metal was starting to run dry, In Aeternum serve as clean-up, finding validity by shoring up possibilities not yet fully explored within the confines of Black and Death metals. And in doing so crafted one of the best albums Sweden has seen in ten years.

The success of this album lies in progression via retrogression. Similarly to the band they must clearly be modeled after, In Aeternum’s attack can be compared to an Angelcorpse in that it is very modern, as it takes full advantage of the arsenal of techniques that fully developed Death/Black metal has to offer, while simultaneously stripping it down to the essentials by tapping into the spirit of the previous generations speed/thrash assault.

The churning percussive attack of early Morbid Angel or Angelcorpse is layered behind patterns and phrases that come only from a Scandinavian, and especially Swedish black/death metal lineage, with an astute listener picking up on Grotesque and Merciless, and even Mayhem being embedded in the genealogy of this work. Dissection and Sacramentum comparisons abound when listening to the melody and phrasing, but like the aforementioned Angelcorpse, the pretentiousness of their influences has been replaced by an ancient war-like barbarism, without sacrificing any of the grandiose beauty that is trademark to the style. Also, in another comparison with Angelcorpse, perhaps the biggest complaint that can be lodged against the band is the formula they employ is so successful there is little need to deviate from it, thus making the album almost predictable by the final track.

The production on this album is superior to almost anything released in the 2000 era. It has the legitimacy of having the “old style” sound in the recording (it doesn’t sound digital) yet preserves the power of the guitar, vocals and percussion equally, so that the elements work together in complete conceptual unity, and never blur together or compete for the conscious attention of the listener.

Forged of the same spirit that brought Destroyer 666 and Angelcorpse, In Aeternum create one of the last valid explorations into the Swedish melodic Death/Black style.



This is a long winded way for me to say "what Angelcorpse might sound like if they liked Dissection and not Morbid Angel".

Re: In Aeternum - The Pestilent Plague review
April 24, 2007, 01:34:37 AM
Good writing. However, the CD is not that good. In fact, everything this band has ever done has been flat. Like a turd on a runway.

Annihilaytorr

Re: In Aeternum - The Pestilent Plague review
April 24, 2007, 01:54:53 AM
I think most of the band's output was substandard, but this was their shining moment of clarity. I am curious what is flat to you on this album?

Re: In Aeternum - The Pestilent Plague review
April 24, 2007, 05:40:37 AM
Angelcorpse is the perfect comparison in the sense that neither band ever did anything but fill in as a second rate copy when first rate bands faltered.

Re: In Aeternum - The Pestilent Plague review
April 24, 2007, 02:22:53 PM
Comparison aside, it's a good listen.

Annihilaytorr

Re: In Aeternum - The Pestilent Plague review
April 24, 2007, 03:37:53 PM
Quote
Angelcorpse is the perfect comparison in the sense that neither band ever did anything but fill in as a second rate copy when first rate bands faltered.


I can agree with some of that, but your statement pre-supposes both that In Aeternum and Angelcorpse were aiming for the same thing Dissection and Morbid Angel were, and they were not. These bands found success in mixing the lexicon of technique and riffcraft from their influences with the spirit of a Kreator or Possessed. This makes for a stimulating listen, while admittedly lacking the depth and longevity the genre highpoints have.

Personally I am glad bands like Angelcorpse and such didn't attempt to replicate the progressive neo-Wagnerian atmosphere of a Morbid Angel, or else we would end up with something more like Mithras, which has none of the beauty of Morbid Angel, and none of the scorching speed/death onslaught that bands like Angelcorpse bring to the table either.

Re: In Aeternum - The Pestilent Plague review
April 25, 2007, 12:01:53 AM
Angel Corpse - Exterminate

The glory of the fight, the thrill of dismembering your foe’s head from where it stands, aghast, six feet above the ground and the consequent shower of blood that cleanses away any previous nerves of killing. The pride of returning home triumphantly to your birthplace with your hair drenched in the blood of your defeated enemies, your eyes stinging from the ‘salts’ of the dark battlefield. Perhaps the feelings of war cannot be sufficiently described in mere words, but one thing is for sure, the epic grandeur of this abstraction has plenty of worthy soundtracks to do honour to its very name and strike fear in its feeble opposers.

Angel Corpse arose from the ashes of the legendary Order From Chaos, striking a much needed renewal of insurgency within the Death Metal genre. “Exterminate” is a tale of conquest, of zealous opposition of the passivity found in Modern society. The themes are presented to us in a fierce rendition that remains cutthroat and urgent from start to finish.

The best comparison that one can make is to the early Florida Death Metal scene. This is Morbid Angel circa 1989-91 at its heart, right down to the “Slayerisms” in all of their magnificence, the spiralling structures and relentless frenzy of the riffing. There’s also some Obituary influence to be heard, mainly the spiralling tremolo riffs that seem to come out of no where – complete disorder. Of course, there are also a few signs of their predecessor, the filthy dissonant whirlwind of Order From Chaos, especially in sound of the ‘mid-paced’ tempo changes that both bands use, makes an appearance. But, the vociferous paroxysms of the titanic monstrosity that was the “Stillbirth Machine” do not shine through in their almost absurd extremity. Nevertheless, this must not be underestimated as a relaxation of the carnage, it is merely rephrased in a different way, with more lucidity in the production.

The drums are a relentless fury that repels the music into the depths of an insurmountable mania. Right down to the intricately layered double-kick work you can hear the thunder of horse’s hooves against the battlefield, the deafening pulsation of the warriors heart resonating through his skull and the chaotic frenzy that only the true glory of an epic battle can reproduce outside of Nature’s dominant will. This enables the guitars to surge forward in an ominous and highly threatening manner. This is also excellent in contrast with the fiercely atonal soloing that gives even Slayer’s chaotic discordance a run for its money.

Whilst, this may not be the acme of Death Metal, its no blemish on the face of its anti-morality worldview. Eight tracks of pummelling, rapid paced Death Metal recommended to fans of the early Florida scene.

Re: In Aeternum - The Pestilent Plague review
April 25, 2007, 12:08:58 AM
Good review.  On that note, what I heard of the new ANGELCORPSE seemed dry and redundant -- completely unnecessary.  A review is probably forthcoming for Heidenlarm, for which we always appreciate additional contributors :)

Annihilaytorr

Re: In Aeternum - The Pestilent Plague review
April 25, 2007, 01:43:23 AM
Angelcorpse - The Inexorable

Between the years 1993 and 1999, Death Metal had slid from a noticeable decline into a full on nosedive, in both terms of creative impetus, and also artistic relevance on a scale larger than simply loud thunder music. Much of what was left of the American wave had devolved into low brow, ham-handed self parody, while a majority of their European scene had morphed into some limp-wristed variant of gothic rock. The majority of the known scenes had failed, with Death Metal being largely a fading memory in Florida, and Sweden living in the wake of “Sthlaulter of the Sthoul”, while New York was churning out the Suffocation meets Cannibal Corpse style of brutal bounce metal at a frantic pace that only increased as the years passed. Removed from all that, from Kansas of all places, is where one of the last great ventures into the American/Floridian style of Death Metal finds its genesis.

The Inexorable is the defining moment for Angelcorpse, and one of the few crowning moments as the aeon of Death Metal came to its end. It exemplifies everything the preceding two albums had attempted, increasing the nuance, technical prowess and intensity to the physical limits of the style. As readily discernable, Angelcorpse draw their primary influence from the undefeated champions of Death Metal, Morbid Angel, especially from the style forwarded by Altars of Madness and adapted on with Covenant. Where there is the tendency to write them off as a trivial, even soulless clone at first, further listening reveal that Angelcorpse aims for something entirely different. Morbid Angel was a neo-classicist, organically esoteric and spiritual experience, where the aesthetic of Angelcorpse is constructed around a barbaric fascination with warfare and a mechanized assault on Christianity, so much so that the modern crop of bands masquerading as “warmetal” undoubtedly turn to Angelcorpse as a primary facilitator. Morbid Angel was influenced by Mozart, Pink Floyd, Slayer, Possessed, and Satan; Angelcorpse is influenced by Slayer, Sodom, Possessed, Satan and Morbid Angel. In the space where Angelcorpse lack in the Ancient and unknown mystic ambience of Azagthoth, a Germanic speed-metal base replaces it with the reckless and unforgiving obsession with the art of riffcraft, a talent at which Angelcorpse’s overwhelming excellence is absolutely undeniable.  

Annihilaytorr

Re: In Aeternum - The Pestilent Plague review
April 25, 2007, 01:51:44 AM
Quote
what I heard of the new ANGELCORPSE seemed dry and redundant -- completely unnecessary.  A review is probably forthcoming for Heidenlarm, for which we always appreciate additional contributors :)



Those are my initial thoughts on the album as well. It lacks all of the things that made Angelcorpse relevant and has all of the faults that precludes them from being counted among the ageless.