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Serpentrance - Akra Tapeinosis

Serpentrance
Akra Tapeinosis
by Andrew Harvey at 21 October 2021, 7:24 AM

Well not often I get a band such as SERPENTRANCE as they are all from Russia so it’s certainly an honour to have them to listen to and well I guess they are certainly a diverse group. They are a trio of musicians who play a mix of black/death/doom metal and they have been together since 2014. The band itself consist of the following members; MORKH on vocals, SPÍRITÓ DESTITUTUS on guitars, HTM on bass guitar and NOERSYE SKEPT on drums.

Their vocalist, MORKH comes from bands such as IZAKARON, MORBID LUST and GOATPSALM. On the other hand, their guitarist SPÍRITÓ DESTITUTUS is coming from the likes of PSUEDOGOD and ILL OMENED. HTM their bassist only recently joined in the last few years in 2018 and the drummer known as NOERSYE SKEPT contributed to the album in a superb way.

Their debut album, AKRA TAPEINOSIS is now the outcome of all the member’s contributions as this is their follow up to their EP titled THE BESIEGED SANCTUM released a few years before in 2015. It has been said that they are “ready to darken the hearts of the unbelievers with their unique and otherworldly sounds, proving once again why Russia is the go-to place for the most disturbing forms of extreme music you can think of”.

The album title actually means; “The Utmost Humiliation” and the album begins with the first track “Vomit & Myrrh”, a 7 and a half minute intro with chorale voices echoing through with murmurs of percussion too. Then a dark mysterious growl is the joint to the black metal soundscape and comes with wicked guitar parts. The sizzling guitar is ringing and screeching like there is no limit. Second in line is “Cloathed In Abomination” which seems to have more of a focus on drums but vocals certainly provide a worthy contribution. The vocals are sinister, haunting but almost creating a sort of nightmare image with occult themes. The guitar seems more sustained and the tempo has been pulled back to allow the elements to run into each other.

“The Tarnished Shrines Of God” is very much the alternative and rebellious streak against religion in the form of the constant but vigorous black metal sound. This comes with essences of doom metal and the guitar feedback noise we heard at first. But the guitar noise returns with cymbal clashing, vocal rumbling and insinuating guitar that spirals along. Drums can be heard, they are pulled back but seem more soloistic, improvising yet deadly within the mix. “Underneath Babylon” is the longest track in duration, there is so much energy and drive in this fourth track. This track also brings more of the doom metal of the guitar, but the vocals are mind-blowing portraying the black metal sound. The rest of this track seems more improvised guitar and drums parts dipping into the dark abyss that’s never ending.

“The Black Dawn Of Sophia”, which is the finale of this album, brings together everything we have heard before. It’s completely twisted with swinging drums, pulsating guitar riffs and evil yet sophisticated vocal lines. So that’s the end of this album it hasn't really got any sort of surprises as it’s predominantly black metal merged with doom & death metal also. I think there is certainly a focus on the blackened metal soundscape, with hints of death metal as well, which reaches into the depths of burning fire surrounding guitar & drums plus vocals. There is a lot of improvisation but perhaps maybe too much, one or two tracks do get carried away. But the band’s intentions are good and well we will see what they have in store for us in their next release.

Songwriting: 7
Musicianship: 7
Memorability: 6
Production: 7

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Vomit & Myrrh
2. Clothed In Abomination
3. The Tarnished Of Shrines Of God
4. Underneath Babylon
5. The Black Dawn Of Sophia
Lineup:
Alexander “Morkh” Shadrin - Vocals
Spíritó Destitutus - Guitars
HTM - Bass
Noersye Skept - Drums
Record Label: Godz Ov War Productions
     


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