Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Ash Borer : "the Irrepassable Gate"

this album starts off with the line between black metal and atmospheric death metal are almost like counting straws on the title track that opens this album. For these guys this is much more committed to being metal than their previous releases. The breathing room they are know for giving their songs doesn't come until seven minutes in to this 11 minute monster. This is short lived as they return to a more familiar blasting. This blasting is give an even more feral focus after the space infused middle section of "Lacerated Spirit". Then comes the first lighter interlude titled "Lustration".

"the Gray Marrow" is the first song that really grabbed me. The riffs are very catchy and all play in step with the double bass in a very mature manner. The vocals might be more of an after thought on this one as it sound like they are being howled with no lyrics in mind. The longest song on the album follows as "Rotten Firmament" is over twelve minutes. At this point it is clear the production value of this album is greatly improved from their previous work as the drum sounds are crisper and really help at to the mood that they have always had, but it is given more clarity. If you are the cvltest fucker south of Norway I suppose you might consider the more polished metal guitar sound to be a little bit of a sellout but it is delivered with such venom it's hard to argue against. The howling vocals seem to get even angrier on this one. Like I often say these guys prove they are more powerful when slowing the blast down to a more deliberate pounding.

Unlike the first part of the "Lustration" titled songs, the second part is slow and heavy though never fully forms into being an actual song and just drones you out like a dark cloud.  I'll give this album an 8.5. Some of the songs are a little longer than I prefer, but this album is clearly more carefully constructed and created by matured musicians who just being fast and heavy is no longer good enough.

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