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Album Reviews : Adamus Exul – Arsenic Idols

By on June 18, 2014

Melbourne’s filthy black metal outfit Adamus Exul are back with ‘Arsenic Idols’, their follow up to the 2011 effort ‘Death, Paint a Vision’. The album was released on the Italian label Aeternitas Tenebrarum Musicae Fundamentum translating roughly to Eternity of Darkness Music Foundation, setting the mood quite nicely for what is in store. Since the 2011 release Adamus Exul has had a substantial change over of members with lead guitarist and songwriter Patrick Cook (aka. A. Exul) bringing in a fresh hoard of dark servants to help in the desecration of all that is good and holy.

Lyrically the album touches on most of the usual black metal standards, that being their general distaste with organised religion, politics, narcissistic attitude of the general population these days and the lack of artistic credibility. While these are hardly new topics for such a band, vocalist and lyricist Nick Magur’s (aka Devalsne) distinctive howl creates such a bleak and desolate atmosphere that it breathes new life (or death?) into these well-trodden topics.

Adamus Exul’s style of black metal involves building a wall of sound of blastbeats, twin tremolo barrage, a unexpectedly audible bass track with Devalsne’s screams of agony smeared over the top and pummelling the listener for 5 to 10 minutes at a time. There are seven tracks clocking up to around 48 minutes beginning with a two minute intro track of what sounds like a crescendo of bees being recorded in the studio. The following four tracks contain a continuous and unyielding black metal attack, with one track nicely leading into the next. Depending on your tastes this is either a love or hate scenario, personally I enjoy this approach to songwriting but to each their own. The 6th track, Isolation Wounds (Absolution Obsolete), slows things down with a haunting violin riff regularly intersecting the 11 minute song creating some of the more memorable moments of the album.

For a band still arguably in its infancy and with the mostly new line up, the musicianship and production values are surprisingly strong. There is a raw and filthy edge to the production without the loss of quality often associated with black metal (although this is arguably one of the traits of black metal).

While there is nothing particularly original on the record, there is plenty to enjoy with plenty of memorable riffs and blast beats to whip your head to which will translate perfectly into a live environment. This is not an album for those new to black metal or those who are shopping around trying to find a new sound, this is an album for enthusiasts who will eat it up, spit out the bones and use them to create a new shrine to Lucifer.

Band: Adamus Exul
Album: Arsenic Idols
Year: 2014
Genre: Black metal
Label: Aeternitas Tenebrarum Musicae Fundamentum
Origin: Melbourne, VIC

Track list:
1. Discordant Rebirth
2. Arsenic Idols
3. Veins Ov Drought
4. The Devastation Archives
5. Redux: The Separatist Movement
6. Isolation Wounds (Absolution Obsolete)
7. Artistic Extinction: Innovation via Desecration