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Aeons Confer - Symphonies Of Saturnus Award winner

Aeons Confer
Symphonies Of Saturnus
by Daniel Fox at 13 January 2014, 5:50 PM

Symphonic extreme Metal, be it in the vein of Death or Black, has always been an especially unique genre, aiming to combine sweeping, musical beauty with savage, metallic brutality. Germany's AEONS CONFER bring to us their most epic and ambitious piece yet in "Symphonies of Saturnus", an incredibly lengthy and complex extreme Metal phenomenon. Upon listening to it I am immediately drawn to the sounds of SEPTICFLESH, DARK FORTRESS, DIMMU BORGIR and GOJIRA.

"ESP" is perhaps the defining embodiment of Symphonic, Blackened Metal. Unlike DIMMU BORGIR, who's focus is on orchestral arrangements and less on electric guitar technicality, AEONS CONFER appear to prefer to have keyboard symphonic arrangements fit an analogous function to the fast, ripping and complex guitar and drum riffs. The drumming… Well, that is another reason I am drawn to DIMMU BORGIR; the double-kick drums are easily at Hellhammer (Jan Axel Blomberg). "Aeonized" is (only just) my favorite track on this record. Essentially everything about this track is perfect, from beginning to end. The droning interlocking of guitars, alien-like keyboard effects and symphonic sweeps introduce a classically DIMMU-like riff sequence; only the drowning heaviness of this song damn right belittles the heaviness of bands that have come before them. But alas, it is not brutality for the sake of lopping heads; it is ingenious, and arranged intelligently, sparingly using subtle changes between double-kick runs, gallops and heavy chugs. A second vocal style is more prevalent in this song, also. Bernhard's screams, utilizing a combination of deep singing/shouting, akin to Tomi Joutsen of AMORPHIS. In a deliciously progressive fashion, this track blossoms into something much bigger, with a far greater (and more complex) symphonic presence.

My other favorite track follows directly after, in "Aeonized". This track comes extremely close in heaviness, but trades in symphonic presence in favor of a far more technical guitar approach. In terms of riffs, the track alternates between the ravening blast beats typically found, and ferociously heavy, groove-based passages. The latter are what make this track special; and band can throw down a basic open B gallop and make it sound heavy, but that could only constrict this band's musical genius. Bone-breaking heavy, but infectiously groovy riffs interlock deceptive and subtle melodic nuances amongst the chugs. Additionally, the presence of clean vocals in this track indicates a nod to FLESHGOD APOCALYPSE, whom this band equals in the epic proportions of their music. Naturally, another highlight on this album is the 12+minute long piece, "Renaissance", which without doubt successfully encompasses everything that this band is and builds on it with a growingly progressive approach to arrangements, and the most obvious symphonic presence on the entire album; this track virtually transcends genres, and is pure art.

This may sound cliché, but AEONS CONFER is literally one of the best bands I have ever heard. When it comes to complexity, musical ingenuity and sheer heaviness, many, if not most bands, will pale in comparison.

5 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Signals
2. ESP
3. Colossal Void
4. Probe
5. Alienate
6. Aeonized
7. Aeons to Come
8. Descent
9. Renaissance
10. The Order of Equilibrium
11. Symphonies of Saturnus Part 1 – The Inheritance
12. Symphonies of Saturnus Part 2 – The Proof
13. Symphonies of Saturnus Part 3 – The Synthesis
14. Supremacy
Lineup:
Bernhard - Vocals
Simon - Guitar
Nils - Drums
Alexander - Guitar
Thomas - Keys
Holger - Bass
Record Label: Independent
     


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