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In The Name of Rites - 92%

orphy, January 31st, 2007

Hailing from my hometown of Edmonton, Alberta, Rites of Thy Degringolade is another band from mastermind Paulus Kressman. Rites was formed as a solo project after the split of Sacramentary Abolishment, and one can hear the resemblance between the two especially in the early material of Rites. Here we have the latest, and unfortunately last release from the band (aside from a promised upcoming EP). "An Ode To Sin" manages to create some blistering fast and chaotic black metal.

This is probably the most tame Rites release in terms of chaos, but that doesn't mean it isn't chaotic at all. There is a plethora of crazy riffs and progressions, along with brilliant arrangements. Of course, the drums on this album are rather prominent. Paulus is a fantastic drummer who plays with precision and fury. The drums are produced extremely well as the beats are all very clear.

There seems to be a bit more experimentation with lead guitar on this album, as the third track "Of Purist Impurity" showcases. I am unaware who does the lead on here, but my suspicion J Wroth. Anyway, the leads are interesting as they use a lot of odd melodies and are effective in their places.

Rites decided to rerecord the track "Thyhathbecomehim" from "Totality", and give it a bit of a new spin. There is an interesting intro before the madness starts. It's interested to compare it to the original, as this album's production features some pretty heavy bass, where as the other one was a bit more raw sounding. Nonetheless, it's quite the treat to hear this song on here again.

Easily this is one of my favourite LPs, and I would suggest it to fans of Axis of Advance, Sacramentary Abolishment, or just anyone who likes chaotic black metal. Again, it's a shame to see the band break up but at least we're given one hell of a full length and hopefully an EP on exit. In the name of Rites... get this LP!

Great chaotic black/death metal - 90%

vorfeed, January 14th, 2006

This is the third full-length album from Rites of Thy Degringolade, a Canadian band playing chaotic black/death metal.

The sound on this album is dominated by the drums, which are crazy as always. AT times it almost sounds as if there ought to be two drummers, considering the amount of fills, cymbal hits, and other madness here. The guitars and bass take a subordinate role, though they're still quite clear. Vocals are a bit more difficult to comprehend than on previous albums, but you can still make out most of what's being said. As always, these guys have fascinating lyrics.

The songwriting on this album follows the trend from The Caryatid to Totality; just as Rites' second album was more coherent than the first, this one is more coherent than the second. As expected from an ex-Sacramentary Abolishment band, the individual riffs and fills are insane, but the songs sound like they've been much more deliberately crafted than before. Songs like "Of Purist Impurity" are more conventional in their approach, without losing the bizarre edge that makes Rites so interesting. Rites has always been a very blasty band, but there are quite a few slower sections here. "Asylums" uses these to great effect, building up a massive feeling of oppression before the song begins in earnest. In fact, the atmosphere gets downright doomy at times, though the band never takes long to get back to blistering speed and technicality.

This is a pretty short album -- just under half an hour long -- and while that may annoy some people, I found it to be just the right length. You get a good, solid chunk of metal, but not so much that the songs start to bleed together. Besides, this one is easy to listen to continuously, so how can you complain? This is easily the best thing Rites of Thy Degringolade have done so far. For fans of Axis of Advance, Sacramentary Abolishment, Conqueror, and other chaotic Canadian metal, An Ode to Sin is a must. Highly recommended.

Standout tracks: "In the Name of Rites", "Of Purist Impurity", "Release the Flies"

Review by Vorfeed: