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Friday, November 9, 2012

De Magia Veterum - The Deification (2012)

Band: De Magia Veterum
Country: Drachten, Netherlands
Style: Progressive Black Metal
Label: Transcendental Creations

Because Mories is obviously a busy guy who manages to constantly reinvent whatever project he's working with, we have another project from probably his most tangible metal project. I think De Magia Veterum is great and last year's album, The Divine Antithesis, was a real piece of work. Other than his main gig in Gnaw Their Tongues, I'm used to a few years in between major releases from his other projects, so I was rather surprised when I got a copy of this.
In the past, this project from Mories has been used as a sort of vehicle for black metal pushed into the realms of extreme dissonance and chaos, but this album is perhaps the most frustrating thing he's released under this name thus far. The songs jump between interesting and progressive riffs and outright guitar dissonance, with some black metal tremolo parts connecting the two. The guitars are just all over the place and are more than a little overwhelming especially combined with the bass which pops out numerous times in all of these tracks, providing even more strangeness to the chaos the guitars bring. At times it reminds me a lot of mid-period Blut Aus Nord, but faster, while other times it sounds closer to what Krallice might sound like on crack. There are also a couple of spots that are quite comparable to Mories' more orchestral-based dark ambient work with Gnaw Their Tongues. Then there's the whole Dillinger Escape Plan-esque spastic and frenetic compositional style where the entire piece jumps around so much to the point where you have a hard time latching onto anything before it changes again. The whole thing is delivered at this hysterical level of intensity and rarely relents to allow you the opportunity to get a breath in. Take into account the sheer amount of noise and distortion covering this thing and you have, easily, one of the most intense and brain-scrambling albums to be released this year. I dare anyone to listen to this once and tell me that they understand it. I'm on my fourth listen (at the time of this writing) and I'm still only picking out bits and pieces of what's actually happening.
It's quite the disorienting piece that will more than likely confound as many as it will amaze. I don't think it's up there with The Divine Antithesis but it's a more amped up sort of record than that one was. If you like really dissonant and crazy sounding black metal, this is the album for you.
Overall Score: 8
Highlights: Passage, Evoked In Poison, Shall Not Take Form

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