Experiencing Chasmic Transcendence (2014)


Article by David Rosales. This review is written on behalf of Akherra Phasmatanás, who so graciously bequeathed his own copy of the album so that its value as a promo investment by the band would not go to waste. He lost his harddrive and the review shortly before completion. Too busy later on and out of metal-reviewing circles, he asked David to review it on his behalf and to officially mention this copy came from him so that the band know he didn’t just drop the ball on them.

It is customary to start off a review of a Finnish death metal band by stating that they are Finnish. This generally carries a tacit implication that the band in question adheres to the particular sound developed more than two decades ago in albums like AmorphisThe Karelian Isthmus and DemigodSlumber of Sullen Eyes. Such a useful hint, carrying so much information for those familiar with regional old school death metal distinctions, only takes one so far and while satisfactory to the casual customer, does little for the serious listener looking forward to knowing what sets Desecresy apart and what they bringing to the table.

What the mature music of Desecresy (by which I mean their work from this album onwards) offers to the veteran audience more than the neophytes is an exquisitely refined Finnish death metal. Refined here carries connotations of trimming away all but the indispensable and, simultaneously, a multiplicity of meaningful, rather than transitional, passages. Chasmic Transcendence manages to be both atmospheric and ambient throughout its playtime while maintaining a constant stream of information in the form of proper metal. It does not avail itself of space or overabundant repetition alone to bide time and induce a state of mind. The price for this is that it must maintain a fairly uniform texture and pacing, while consistency of mode and style being a given as becomes respectable traditional underground metal.

“Rot of the millenia
In Furnace of Reformation
Memories lapse in whirling Deep
entities of the Past washed away
— V. Cyclonic Mass Consumptor

Conceptually, Desecresy is incredibly focused to the point of giving a false illusion of overall minimalism. Visual artwork, lyrics and music conspire to project a clear image in complimentary pieces. This image is a sign and symbol. The picture is cold, dark, vast, cosmic on a scale beyond the wildest dreams common mankind. Only vague shadows, ripples over the waters of matter, shapes of old and powerful beings beyond good and evil. Events and characters that dwarf our petty existences to nothing. To fully understand the nightmares and crazed visions herein portrayed, an acquaintance with an inverted gnosticism seems helpful. Here lies great death metal. This is the ritual area, where music is a vehicle for holistic human-cosmic experience and perception.

“Pillars reaching down
from Nebulous Mist
where the lack of Light
grows ever thicker.
Every brief moment
passed down
where Shadows
reach the weary feet.
From corners indistinct
Mass of Total Isolation
Endless Drift of Frigid Fog
carries on to pass the sentences
far from the past denied.”
— XIII. Infinite Halls

From the point of view of structure-building, Desecresy crown themselves masters of their art here. Chasmic Transcendence is a laboriously wrought mansion with extensive gardens, enameled with sympathetic bits of precious stone that connect to each other by their very nature, as melodies of music which by motific alterations belong to a same root. These are the first to reach the conscious mind. Then come expertly masoned rock and stone, overgrown with organic masses living and breathing in multitudinous harmony. This indestructible foundation would seem to emanate the rest, or emanate from the rest. In truth, all of the instruments in their different functions and apparitions in space-time are so synchronous with each other that they become that sort of musical living entity that all transcendent music aspires to create. In doing so they occupy a same abstract space, working as different spheres of concentration in a morbid Tree of Death.

Listen below and purchase the CD from Desecresy’s Bandcamp page.

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39 thoughts on “Experiencing Chasmic Transcendence (2014)”

  1. Roger says:

    Does this review carry more information about Desecresy’s album or about what drug(s) you were on whilst listening to Desecresy’s album?

    1. C.M. says:

      “This writing has metaphors and abstract analogies that are richer than what I’m used to. The author must be on drugs.”

      What drugs have you done that have so flattened your imagination?

      1. Roger says:

        There is imagination, and then there is letting lost in impressionistic jargon, my nubile young cosmonaut.

        1. BlackPhillip says:

          That’s too bad that you believe the only way to fully appreciate music is to get stoned.

    2. @ Roger

      Does your comment carry more information on why you turned into a resentful faggot, or which of your orifices were being pounded whilst you were typing this comment ?

      1. Roger says:

        I see I have hit a nerve of sorts.

        Getting high and listening to death metal does not make you profound, guys. You will understand when you hit your 30s.

        1. fenrir says:

          What’s wrong with getting high? I’m past 30 and I’m doing pretty fine, all considered. I’m sure you allow yourself an occasional trip.

        2. David Rosales says:

          Frankly, I’ve never touched any sort of drugs in my life. Nor do I think I will anytime between now and when I turn thirty. I don’t see any reason why I’d do it, and agree with you on how unnecessary they are for art creation or appreciation.

    3. David Rosales says:

      I find it extremely interesting that you are unable or unwilling to read the meanings in there regarding the music, and then further down the comments you wrote negative descriptions of what I described as the superficial appearance of the music. I invite you to listen differently, it took me a while to be able to “see” this album.

  2. Brett Stevens (Unverified) says:

    I now tend to find this band slightly boring and one-dimensional.

    1. Cynical says:

      Try going back to the first album, “Arches of Entropy”. I would agree with you on their later albums, which sacrifice all sense of movement for atmosphere, but the first album avoids this sin, being like a Finnish version of Bolt Thrower albums three through five.

      1. Brett Stevens says:

        Thanks. It is indeed the lack of linear movement which bores the pants off me with this band. It’s almost as if they’ve sacrificed narrative for atmosphere. Not quite. There is a narrative, but it’s painfully plodding.

        1. Roger says:

          Right. In this sense, the band seems somewhat regressive to me. Bouncy rhythms throughout. Almost like listening to a more cosmic Cannibal Corpse. No joke.

          The drummer needs to learn how to blast, so that the rest of the instruments can free themselves from the constraints of rhythm and unleash flowing phrases of information than can be subject to variations before the phrase gets old.

    2. I tend to disagree. The atmospheric material is more like Burzum, and as Cynical mentions, their earlier work shows them exploring old-school death, from which they then chose one aspect to explore. I compare them most to the self-titled Asphyx in this regard, if one infused some of the Burzum, Summoning and Graveland sense of ambient metal.

      1. Are u the real Brett Stevens ?

        1. checks self in mirror


          1. Brett Stevens says:

            Crap. Then Who Am I?

            1. pompous midget says:

              You are Bert Stebbins, perhaps?

    3. Bsking says:

      You will be saying that about all the garbage you’ve pushed here as ‘real metal’ in ten years, once your balls have dropped and you cringe with embarrassment at the thought of this site in general.

  3. Jerry Hauppa says:

    Reminds me of what you had to say about visualizing The Rack a while ago. I’ll listen with this in mind.

    I have an odd visual habit when I immerse myself in a record. I imagine the stereo signal of music as two forces speeding past me on their respective sides with me observing in the center as the notes present themselves in rectangular shapes varying in length dependent on the speed of the note and visual height dependent on the pitch, with size of the shapes present as volume. I guess this is how all people can perceive music in a way, but visually assigning values to the notes depicts cityscapes as the songs progress and the dependence of left and right ear on each other either exposes tight uniformity in shapes of structure or elaborate complimentary variance through harmony and counterpoint.

    1. David Rosales says:

      That’s quite interesting.

      In general, it shouldn’t be that formulaic, and different records lend themselves more or less to this sort of treatment. This one is an ambient death metal rich in contents, even if th expression is simple.

      Someone up there was criticizing the drumming as if it tied down the music. I’d say it sounded more like the guitars got written first and the drummer took the time to not just blast and “metal” away, but to create patterns as counterpoint to the riffs and melodies that effectively created a different dimension. The normal death metal blast beat layering is just putting wheels on it. This guy wrote percussion-based ambient without dropping the ball on his metal drummer responsibilities.

      1. Rainer Weikusat says:

        This is another one-man studio project and it sounds more or less like all of them do. The voices should interact but they don’t, they’re just stacked on top of each other according to some master layering plan. Also as usual, that’s most easily recognized in the percussion parts which are completely lifeless here. Take »Autumn of Souls« as an example (as I’ve just listened to that twice): There’s a whopping, single idea expanded into a 3 minute drum part whose purpose is to amplify the atmosphere create by the upper guitar layers. This works good as the start of the track as the original idea was good but slowly turns into “Why this again? Didn’t I just hear this?” as the music proceeds and the only thing which distinguishes this from an uncreatively programmed drum machine is that the person who plays this misses the right time for a beat somewhere in the middle of the track (different to locate as this track has only middle parts).

        This is not ambient death metal, it’s (stylistically) ambient techno with a death metal surface and not particularly good one, either. That’s why I mentioned »computer game soundtrack« in the other comment: This has strong similarities to the kind of computer-generated non-music people tend to compose for their Doom levels (insert name of gameplay-simplified, graphicalness-amplified FPS du jour).

        1. fenrir says:

          Everything interacts in this album.
          Your repeatedly confirmed arrogance in blindness is getting annoying and a little boring.

          1. Rainer Weikusat says:

            A piece of an assembled puzzle fullfills its function but it doesn’t influence the way the other pieces fullfill theirs.

          2. Bsking says:

            If you’re going to try and insult someone, the sentence needs to make sense first. Haha, you pseudo intellectual bellend.

  4. C.M. says:

    Thanks for this, David. I will have to listen to this one more because the only Desecresy I’m familiar with is Arches of Entropy, which is unrefined but satisfyingly direct.

  5. Rainer Weikusat says:

    This has a “computer game soundtrack” air to it.

    1. C.M. says:

      The hell kind of video games are you playing with soundtracks that sound like Desecresy? Because I’d get on board that train.

      1. LostInTheANUS says:

        Probably STALKER.

  6. Can you survive the blitzkrieg says:

    Stoic Death is even better. Do more death metal articles.

  7. pompous midget says:

    Why is Roger such a fag?

    1. Roger says:

      Its just a facade in order to seduce your mom, who is obviously attracted to demure men.

      1. pompous midget says:

        Then why don’t you just submit an article instead of constantly bitching and pretending to be gay?

        1. Roger says:

          What? So ‘submitting an article’ is a prerequisite for commenting? I hope you will see the hypocrisy inherent in you expressing this in a comment.

          1. pompous midget says:

            No, it is not a prerequisite.

            But given that you frequent this site and often deride the writing methods and/or disagree with the conclusions of its writers, I think that offering a differing opinion phrased however you choose might be a beneficial next step for you and DMU readers alike (if Daniel decides to put it up).

            1. Bsking says:

              You sound really triggered here, kid.

  8. Roger says:

    GOREMENT’S Album sounds like a much better version of the kind of dm attempted here, with slight aesthetic differences.


    Desecrecy’s songs do not flow well to my ears

  9. Zombitch says:

    They have a pretty good preschool sound.

  10. Zombitch says:

    Sorry LOL. Damn, autospellchecker… I meant Oldschool sound!

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