Ave Maria - Chapter I
Ahdistuksen Aihio Productions
Psychedelic Black Metal
9 songs (42:30)
Release year: 2011
Ahdistuksen Aihio Productions
Reviewed by Tony
Surprise of the month
We used to play a local Catholic University built by the CEO of Domino’s Pizza in rugby that goes by the same name as this band, Ave Maria. The school is brand new, but it is supposed to be a big deal in the next few decades. I am not sure what it literally translates to, but to get amped up I would make a playlist of my most sacrilegious music to warm up to. I expected a fast and ferocious Black Metal band when I got this album, but instead got a reserved, intelligent, and talented Psychedelic Black Metal outfit. Chapter I is the first full length for the band who purvey this young sub-genre, but seem to be even more like their forefathers Pink Floyd than the band who made Black Metal out of Pink Floyd worship, Nachtmystium.

This is not to say that the band are not heavy, as their vocals are heavy enough along with the lo-fi warm drum production and interesting riffs, but the band go about their heaviness in a different manner – lacking those “wall-of-sound” riffs or blasts early or often. The band use guitars that have a certain quality about them that hovers between genres with a less Blackened sound in some places and a rougher and colder sound in other. Coitus Behind Moral Walls is a solid opener which defines the intent of the album, before the strange eerie guitars and jazz talents of the drums shine through in the chaotic Shining Toxic. This track is one of the finest of the album, highlighting a lot of what Ave Maria sought out to do.

The quality continues with The Cloven Psalmody, a song that once again features the meandering talents to drummer C., who puts almost a fill per measure, showing a skill in improvisation. The feel here is more upbeat, with a more rock driven and less proggy or jazzy feel to the riffs. Some of the best riffs are played during The Cloven Psalmody. This is one of the catchiest and most unique songs I have heard in a while.

Impulses from the Sphere of Broken Larynx is the first track to employ blast beats and is the truest to the traditional Black Metal sound. After the initial flurry, more groove oriented beats that have become household on Chapter I reenter the picture. This is another terrific track and one that is more reminiscent of Black Metal than the previous six tracks. What differentiates Ave Maria from the biggest name in Psychedelic Black Metal, Nachtmystium, is that instead of using synthesizers to make their music weird and bizarre, they instead use their god given talents on the fret board coupled with a warm drum sound and frequent jazz style playing to establish their desired sound.

Ave Maria are a refreshing take on this budding genre, and while it would be challenging to call their music genius, it is certainly unique and new enough to call it my surprise of the month – a band that I look forward to reviewing in the future.

Killing Songs :
Shining Toxic, The Cloven Psalmody, Tongues
Tony quoted 81 / 100
1 readers voted
You did not vote yet.
Vote now

There are 4 replies to this review. Last one on Sat Jan 07, 2012 12:18 am
View and Post comments