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Haeresiarchs of Dis - Adumbrâtus [Moribund Records - 2019]

Adumbrâtus is album number five from San Jose, California one-black metal project Haeresiarchs of Dis. And what we have here is a fairly even & mostly coherent meeting between careering 'n' sinisterly bounding USBM, and symphonic Scandinavian BM- with touches of darkly grand cinematics, and some creative non-metallic genre-blending. It’s an album that swings between pummelling-to-stark grimness, & epic prog touched symphonic- and sometimes blends them both together in a balanced manner- which is not an easy feat.

The project started life in 2008- and finds Cernunnos handling all instruments & vocals. The projects sound is a mixture of traditionally grim & largely galloping guitar, bass & drums, with the BM vocals been effective scrawling shrieks 'n' croaks. Then of course we have the more symphonic/ cinematic/ metal prog instrumentations- which takes in darkly rising choirs, theatrical & swooping clear harmonizing vocals, shifting synthetic orchestration, with darts in darkening & grand ambience/ sinister neo-classic moods.

We go from the simmering 'n' churning grim BM riff craft- meets marching symphonics of “When The Cold Dark Reigns”- which features some great bounding-to-moody bass work, which at points rather reminded me of what a meeting between more metallic Devil Doll & Goblin might sound like. There’s the sew-sawing feel of “Accretion of Hesperos and Flesh” with its swing between choppy ‘n’ speedy discordance, & mid pace dark spiralling riff-craft that’s underfed by blends churning dark keys & orchestra. We have the stark drip-dropping guitar harmonics, clean cold pickings & creepy croak beginning of "Nucleus of Corruption (Apposite i. and ii.) i. Compulsory Treatise" that opens into churning dark riff maelstrom meet’s swarming cinematic strings dramatics. And towards the end of the album we have shifting genre-scaping of "Reclamation of the Hinterlands", which starts all western twanging ‘n’ marching metallic, moves onto bounding & discordant BM. Then drops into arabic cinematics moodily topped with dramatic spoken word tones, before building into swirling maelstrom of darting bass, squalling BM riff craft & rapidly spat shrieks.


Adumbrâtus is a Black Metal album that mangers to effectively bring together the grim & epic sides of the genre- rarely dilute the impact of either. It’s an album that’s creative & experimental in its composition - yet this never lessens the full blacked metal impact of the whole thing. All told I was most impressed by what we have here, and I look forward to checking out Haeresiarchs of Dis back catalog, and future releases from the project.

Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5

Roger Batty
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