Magister Templi - Into Duat
Cruz Del Sur Music
Epic heavy metal
8 songs (39' 44")
Release year: 2015
Cruz Del Sur Music
Reviewed by Andy
Album of the month

A couple of years ago I was quite interested by Magister Templi's debut, Lucifer Leviathan Logos, and as one might reasonably do, I expected to see the occult subject matter of the first one repeated on their sophomore album. This time, though, the band has cooked up a concept album revolving around ancient Egyption creation mythology and the Osiris myth. Into Duat keeps everything that had been good about Lucifer Leviathan Logos, but eliminates the weaknesses that the band's sound had the first time around. Abraxas d'Ruckus's bombastic vocals remain, and so do the crushingly heavy riffs and slightly messy song structure, but the riffing on here is fantastic, and the theatrical mood in which the album is steeped is the icing on the cake here.

After starting with a vaguely Eastern-sounding riff to get the listener in the mood, Creation blasts away with the big, doomy riffs they had on the first album, and Abraxas's strident baritone, which occasionally makes forays into the falsetto range from time to time, has gotten louder and more commanding since the last time, although they've quieted him down in the mix a bit now. The solos are fairly minimalistic; almost everything revolves around the bludgeoning one gets from the rhythm section, which is pretty awe-inspiring whenever they pick up some speed. And pick up speed they do -- a lot. When Abraxas starts Osiris a capella, with an agonized shriek of "Sarcophagus...is filling with molten leaaaaaadd!", one can see how much better these guys have gotten -- he'd never have been able to pull off the vocal breaks he does in this one in the last album without making it look too silly, and the chorus calls which had been on the last album's Master of the Temple are polished and tight. The riffs on that one and its followup, Horus the Avenger (the former is about Osiris's death at the hands of his brother Set, the latter is about his son Horus's defeat of Set) are incredibly epic, like an 80s-era Manilla Road song but with more doom and speed.

Things only get more epic from here on in the next three songs. I especially enjoyed the galloping chorus on Sobek, but all the tracks have their own charm. Anubis, for example, has this thundering double-kick rhythm that shakes the ground under the feet of the the complex, NWOBHM-style riffs like a charging herd of elephants, and Slaying Aphophis's swinging beat has surprising little flashes of melody on the choruses before diving back into the riffing, as Abraxas howls the lyrics describing the demon Apophis, the snake who attempts to swallow the sun in the underworld. Destruction has a bit less of the speed and heaviness of the preceding tracks, instead focusing on a more delicate treatment of the bassline and soloing to allow for a slower ending in the epic style they're shooting for.

I was expecting better things out of the band in their second album, but this is way better than I could have asked for. Into Duat mixes the doominess of the band's initial sound with a turbocharged NWOBHM-style speed and pours heaviness on top of a sort that I've only seen Visigoth match this year. Grab a copy of this and crank the volume knob as soon as you can.

Killing Songs :
All of them
Andy quoted 90 / 100
Other albums by Magister Templi that we have reviewed:
Magister Templi - Lucifer Leviathan Logos reviewed by Andy and quoted 78 / 100
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