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AENAON: "Cendres Et Sang" - 70%

skaven, January 11th, 2013

Aenaon is another rather new addition to code666's roster of avant-garde black metal, and another successful one. Cendres et Sang does not appeal to those solely into anti-modernist, low fidelity cellar black metal, but those who rejoice in compromising and uncommon elements in their black metal (or the other way around: a little bit of black metal in their what ever weirdness you could call this.

To depict the album more specifically, you may still except a fair deal of blast beats, tremolo guitar and harsh screams. Heck, the main riff of ”Psychonautic Odyssey” is a pretty old school, Celtic Frost like one. But the introductory ”Kafkaesque” already reveals that there's more to Aenaon's music than the basic extreme metal instrumention and execution: there's plenty of saxophone around this album which creates a really jazzy feeling at places, plus a myriad of other manipulated sound effects in every corner of the 53-minute whole. The result is, while not always intriguing and extraordinary, an interesting journey through surprising compositions.

The musicianship is no short of quality either, the main compliment going to the drummer's seat. He is a monster here, knowing how to play dynamically: when to go into warm jazzy grooves and when to include the power and roughness of blast beats. No complaints to any other section of the lineup either, it all seems to work well in spite of the fact that this is their debut.

In the end, Cendres et Sang leaves a positive taste. Even in the realm of experimental black metal, I don't think the album is really revolutionary as there's a already a heap of groups doing quite similar music, but I still think the album is a worthy effort. It is easy to hear the sweat and pain that has went into the creation of this many-faced, richly textured piece. Cendres et Sang won't open to its full glory right in the beginning as the challenging and confusing compositions do require more time. I still haven't given the album enough spins I think, but at each go it seems to get a tad better.

3.5 / 5
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