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Ahnenkult - Als das Licht verging - 92%

Edmund Sackbauer, November 8th, 2019
Written based on this version: 2018, CD, Einheit Produktionen (Digipak)

Ahnenkult is a band/project founded by two members of Carn Dûm who made themselves a name within the black metal community. “Als das Licht verging” is their full length debut after a few EPs and a compilation and for fans of the afore-mentioned band will not be surprised by the quality and professionalism to be found on this record. With lyrical themes covering Nordic myths and astrological topics in that regard the whole package comes across very stringent and surely is a gem for fans of the genre.

The somewhat unique production quality gives the album a raw sound many times throughout, especially in terms of the vocal aspects. The guitar riffs found in this one aren't too complex or fast paced, but they still manage to keep a memorable tone and add to the stellar melodies accompanied by the steady percussions and the snarling vocals. There is some solo guitar action in certain songs, but it's never too overwhelming. However, I will say that the rhythm and the lead guitar complement each other adequately. Sharp basic chords are melted with eerie and hypnotic harmonies to create an outstanding atmosphere.

The main-tempo is often pretty slow for a black metal band with some acoustic and ambient parts ramping up the intensity. The song-writing is polished so that the single parts are always merged into fascinating songs and all tracks together form one piece of dark art. The music creates a bleak atmosphere and offers a certain kind of melancholic beauty. Melodic themes are always subtly present in the background giving the whole affair an epic character. The band cleverly took the trademark riffs of each track and sliced and diced them to give the songs another layer. Some of the hooks are very memorable so after the second or third listen you will recognize most of the lead lines and main patterns and it will become easy to distinguish one song from the other and see the whole picture that they wanted to create.

The production is powerful without sounding too modern or sterile. There is a certain level of rawness and filthiness left without sacrificing the clarity of the mix. Each instrument can be heard and even the bass gets a few moments to shine. Rounded off by a nice looking cover artwork and a digipak in the typical Einheit Produktionen quality Ahnenkult is a band that fans of the genre should check out.