Right now, above the metal underground there is what was coined, I believe originally by Pogrom from Arghoslent, the “Funderground”. The funderground consists of independent labels, sometimes mainstream distributed, releasing thousands of albums each year full of rehashed material or rebranded three-chord hardcore with different superficial aesthetics to fuel a bar show audience’s drunken moshing or make hipsters feel smart for liking an indie rock release with a dirty production. One can see this divide in most of the popular “underground” web forums such as those of Nuclear War Now! and Full Moon Productions. The most popular “underground” “metal” releases of each year are all older metal rehashed into pop-rock structures or rebranded hardcore. This divide is similar to what is felt in mainstream Western culture with the leftist “elites”‘ constant Marxist virtue signaling and branding freethinkers with various epithets for refusing to chant the praises of socialism mandated by the vanguard party.
2016 is over. The funderground mentality continued spreading forth, infesting metal over the last year just the same as it had in the decades past the genre’s artistic high-point in the early nineties. Rehashes of past greats pandering to a lowest common denominator audience continue to dominate the release schedules of metal labels all too willing to please the lemmings with music fit to safely ignore during drunken socializing. Ever-flowing streams of posers are desperate to be rock stars, pumping out plagiarism, and paying their way to record deals. File sharing and streaming reducing the cost of hearing new music to essentially nothing has led fans to constantly consume whatever is new regardless of quality. However the purging is at last at hand. The day of doom is here. The filth who have lied and corrupted the underground must be cleansed while the commendable elite few will remain.
Ananku is a term from the Tamil language describing the otherworldly and awesome power of sublime natural places and objects to overwhelm mankind into submission to their will by merely the perception of them. Jarno Nurmi of Serpent Ascending accomplishes this musically on his album of the same name by composing harmonized heavy and black metal style leads atop a death metal rhythmic basic into occult blackened narratives. Riffs are phrased and repeat to numerologically unfold, revealing profound and novel melodic leads as if the petals of a flower gradually blooming into gnostic truth when bathed in unconquered light.
Jarno Nurmi was interviewed by black metal blog Raw War to promote his one man band Serpent Ascending‘s new album, Ananku. Jarno reveals he has left Desecresy and discusses the Finnish black and death metal scenes along with the mythological, occult, and esoteric motivations behind his latest work, Ananku.
Aṇaṅku is a different concept from ancient Tamil language and the word was chosen because it is widely unused and unknown, in many senses, but also because of it’s meanings of course. This is a nod to my earlier interests towards Indian and Asian esoteric traditions from where the process began though it ended up in something quite different.
The album turned out to have emphasis mostly on Northern European culture and identity from which it seeks to find the hidden sacred force that the word Aṇaṅku symbolises in the context. The album is adoration to Earth’s and Nature’s holiness, soil, blood and death.
Serpent Ascending‘s Ananku came out on CD recently courtesy of I, Voidhanger Records. The solo project of Jarno Nurmi of Desecresy, Serpent Ascending compose heavy and speed metal riffs into occult narratives of blackened death metal. Ananku is limited to 300 copies and may be purchased from Jarno Nurmi himself at the Serpent Ascending bandcamp page.
Humans are by nature delusional. They overestimate their importance and demand that reality fit their simple expectations. And yet, they are very good at mastering known skills, so they are highly proficient, but void of purpose. This hollowness is the left side of the metal Bell Curve, and to separate it from the good stuff, we have Sadistic Metal Reviews!
Article by Lance Viggiano.
Ananku is random stereotypical sentimentality in terms of both pseudo climactic release and legacy nostalgia underscored by the crooning of its capricious composer. One may skip to any moment of this record and find a passable to competent riff which invites the listener to further explore its contents. Yet to sit through the work in succession, the order – or lack thereof- is much akin to a dreamlike state. Waking life is a comedic but rationally apprehensive continuity; whereas the experience of dreaming is much like thumbing through to one’s favorite moments in no particular order and therefore as a whole Ananku betrays its efforts at thematic unity. The forces behind Serpent Ascending make a noticed use of genre firmament however indecisive haste fashioned for itself a fallen world.
Article by Anton Rudrick.
Following a tradition of Finnish death metal, Serpent Ascending first proved its allegiance to the old stream of thought on The Enigma Unsettled. The project stood out as possessing that rare gift that grants vision past forms and into the value therein encased as dormant power, codified, awaiting a worthy hero who can pull the Sword from the Stone. While using techniques and musical structures that are well-known, interesting counterpoint and chant-like melodies can be seen in that first album, inserting them in between more conservative power metal riffs that were eerie enough to belong to occult death metal but also displayed a penchant for memorable phrases. Five years have elapsed since then, and several Desecresy albums have seen the definition and reaffirmation of that band into a distinctly esoteric style. Many were keenly expectant upon the future of Serpent Ascending.
Serpent Ascending announced that their debut album Aṇaṅku is going to be released by I, Voidhanger Records on September 16th. Serpent Ascending is the solo-project of Desecresy vocalist Jarno Nurmi and previously released two extremely promising demos, Serrpent Ascending and The Mournful Pilgrimage, that were compiled with one new track in The Enigma Unsettled anthology CD. From the label’s press release: