Setherial - Ekpyrosis
Regain Records
Black Metal
8 songs (44:39)
Release year: 2010
Setherial, Regain Records
Reviewed by Steve

Ekpyrosis: “A tribute to the complete obliteration of all particles that were ever created where the allseeing / alldestroying eye of Satan is represented by the destructive forces and dark energies of this vast, unknown universe.” (Infaustus, 04/02/2010, Occult Black Metal Zine.)

The musicianship on Ekpyrosis is as fantastic as one would expect from a band who’ve been making black metal for seventeen years, despite the fact that they haven’t released an album since 2006’s Death Triumphant. It’s true the lineup has seen it’s fair share of turnover, but the keys to the puzzle, Mysteriis on drums and Kraath on guitar, were in place at or very near the band’s beginning. All of the members are multi-instrumentalists and this shows through in the deliberate songwriting they practice.

Mysteriis played without triggers for Ekpyrosis and, in combination with the understated use of the keyboard, this contributes to a pleasingly natural sound without being muddy. In fact, if anything, the production is just a touch too polished, although not nearly enough to be a major detraction. This successful effort is all the more impressive given that the band produced the album themselves. Kraath’s playing is sharp and professional throughout and Infaustus turns in a vocal performance which reflects his “sheer Satanic death fanaticism”.

There are some boring spots on this record. The second longest song, Thoughts of Life They Wither, for example, challenges the listener to discern where it ends and the following track begins. It’s also true that there’s not a lot going on here that you can’t find elsewhere, even in the increasingly gray world of black metal. As mentioned, though, Setherial is a band of talented musicians, and they clearly give great consideration to the art of composition. This results in Ekpyrosis being, at times, magnificently compelling, such as during album closer Enemy of Creation, and that is a quality rare enough to merit attention and praise.

Killing Songs :
Enemy of Creation
Steve quoted 86 / 100
Other albums by Setherial that we have reviewed:
Setherial - Death Triumphant reviewed by Alex and quoted 60 / 100
Setherial - Endtime Divine reviewed by Alex and quoted 69 / 100
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