There have been a handful of US black metal bands pushing the genre to new heights, and since we’re in an era of bands expanding the sound even further, it’s truly remarkable to see bands take that approach and make music that is compassionate.
Spirit Possession, a black metal band from my neck of the woods(Portland Oregon), is a band I’ve been hearing wonderful things about. Truth be told, my excitement and expectations were met very highly.
In 2020, the band released their self-titled debut, “Spirit Possession.” The album was an attempt to incorporate and experiment with different musical genres. It was met quite well by many critics, but fast forward three years later, “Of The Sign…” is perhaps the most structured, diverse, and authentically driven album this band has ever created.
Of The Sign… showcases the members of Spirit Possession and informs the listener that they don’t mess around. Musically, this album takes everything from the debut and makes it significantly better in terms of musicality, production, lyricism, compositions, and craftsmanship. Every song on this record gives it that unsettling atmosphere, and I can say right off the bat, this album is loaded with everlasting darkness and gives it that raw, old-school, and distinctive taste of what black metal was back in the day.
With hard-hitting tracks such as “Hierarchical Skin,” “Enter the Golden Sign,” and “Orthodox Weapons,” the songs go out with an instant bang, giving proper intelligence that’s not only very bold but also give it that majestic, haunting, and atmospheric approach. The instrumentation work on those songs as a whole is wonderfully produced and nearly perfect in every sense imaginable.
While their self-titled debut album was just a test to see what Spirit Possession was aiming for, “Of The Sign…” is the band’s answer to their prayers and is successfully crafted, in my opinion, the best black metal album of 2023.