For some of you who may remember, about four years back I did a review on an EP by a band named Anguis Dei titled Ad Portas Serpentium that was released via Svart Records. Skip to present time and we are now presented with Angeist, the debut full length from Anguis Dei through Drakkar Productions. As with the EP, this band continue to bring darkness, chaos and hellish orchestral onslaught in vein of old 90s symphonic black metal like Emperor, Dimmu Borgir and Cradle of Filth. Listening to Angeist, you will feel as if you are listening to an instant classic black metal album.
These Japanese conjurers of all that is evil have a unique and unorthodox style of black metal. They tend to fuse avantgarde soundscapes, genre defying technicality and otherworldly orchestral atmosphere extremely well. What makes Angeist stand out from other black metal releases is the fact Anguis Dei do not just stick to a simple cookie cutter formula like many bands tend to do. Tracks vary in their own unique sound from Separation of Æthyr’s dominant death metal vocals and epic solo to L’autre Serpent’s illustrious orchestral grandeur that intertwines with the black metal groundwork laid down in this track.
Everything about Angeist is epic and before coming in with any expectations or ideas, throw those thoughts away right now. You will not be able to compare or describe this album or this band to anyone correctly as it is just an experience that one has to have in order to understand. The best way to put it is grab some second-wave black metal, mix in the orchestra from hell and add in an abundance of chaos and you’ll still not get close enough to making this flawless debut. I highly recommend adding Angeist to any metalhead’s collection, you definitely will not regret it.
Overall Score: 9.5/10
Review by Neil Andersen