Obsequiae – Aria of Vernal Tombs (20 Buck Spin)Thursday, 7th May 2015
The best bands often invoke a certain imaginative quality to them. Meaning you can listen to their music and be transported away to a time and place that is not your own. Upon the first notes of hearing Obsequiae, you are instantly brought back to medieval times (the period, not the restaurant). The majesty and elegance of life in a castle (minus the stench that would certainly accompany it). Last year, 20 Buck Spin did us the pleasure of reissuing the band’s first album, Suspended in the Brume of Eos, which originally saw daylight back in 2011. It’s been four years since then, so how has time fared for the band?
Aria of Vernal Tombs is a natural progression from the band’s debut. With the band quickly jumping in on such a distinct sound of their own, the only thing they really needed to do was continue along the same route and that’s what we see here. The combination of early Gothenburg-styled melodies with baroque influence is distinct to the point where there aren’t really any good comparisons other than that of maybe Eucharist. The band doesn’t feel the need to race through any of the songs, instead letting the melodies be the guide, with each track finding it’s footing at the mid-tempo and really showering the listener with masterful riff after masterful riff. There are often breaks in the form of instrumental pieces with a medieval flair to them. These acoustic pieces never fail to capture the imagination and have a bit of a calming effect. Lastly, the production/recording gives a timeless vibe to the whole thing, evoking the days of the past without disrupting the listening process.
As we continue to seek out new labels for bands, if anyone is deserving of the term “castle metal,” it’s Obsequiae. A young band that continues to forge their own path, and that they did so from the start is worthy of praise. Those with a hankering for some delightful “vintage” melodic death metal are destined to become enamored with Aria of Vernal Tombs.