Akitsa - Credo
Profound Lore Records
Black Metal
6 songs (41:47)
Release year: 2018
Profound Lore Records
Reviewed by Goat

Canadian destroyers Akitsa have been going since 1999, their brand of black metal not changing over the years - even their austere black and white cover artwork. Until now! Yet despite this new and shocking sepia tint to Credo's cover art, there's not much different inside; the band are still very much raw black metal of the old Norske type, although with the move to Profound Lore comes a cleaner production that even allows the bass to be heard. There's no semblance of catchiness; instead, it's merely pleasant to hear black metal that goes back to basics and entrances the listener with its atmosphere, any melodies arising from the morass of layered guitars as likely to be in your own head as actually in the music.

That unusually distinct Québecois traditionalism is present and correct, comparisons to any other bands except members of the same scene seeming as wrong as ever. Nine-minute album opener Siècle Pastoral has a touch of Burzum to its fuzzy riffs and incoherent shrieked vocals however, although it misses out on the keyboard plinks. Musically this is about as traditional as black metal gets, a mid-paced, almost upbeat drumbeat and chillingly atmospheric guitar lines that buzz their way into your head hypnotically. However that doesn't mean it or any of the songs here aren't memorable; Voies Cataclysmiques is punkier and angrier, the intense vocals taking the lead over the simple repeated riffing, while Le Monde Et Ma Bile is altogether different, slower and with a touch of doom, like one of Marduk's more intense pounders albeit with a touch of psychedelic rock to the swirling guitars. It's one of several points on the album that really sells it; black metal with its heart rooted in 1998 rather than 2018.

Credo may not be an especially technical album, or one that will threaten the likes of Dream Theater for instrumental prowess, but it is a well-crafted album that knows how to use its strengths. The album is bookended with longer, more atmospheric tracks, filling the middle with (slightly) shorter, more to-the-point pieces, and the intensity never drops. Perhaps not their best overall album but as a summing-up of their credo this is a great introduction to Akitsa, a band that have always and probably will always sound like two dudes in their bedroom kicking up a black metal storm. And sometimes that's all that you need!

Killing Songs :
Siècle Pastoral, Le Monde Et Ma Bile, Credo
Goat quoted 75 / 100
Other albums by Akitsa that we have reviewed:
Akitsa - Goetie reviewed by Mountainman and quoted 83 / 100
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