Communitas (Deconstructing The Order)
posted on 2/2010 By:
2005's Mighty Cosmic Dances, from this Czech symphonic black metal act was a nice little surprise a few years ago, so when this appeared a whopping 5 years later, I was eager to see if the band continued with their ambitious take on avant gardge symphonic black metal.
Where Mighty Cosmic Dances was a more well…cosmic and space themed release, Communitas is a more grounded effort and thusly the band's experimentation (notably the saxophone didgeridoo, mouth harp and such) fits more in line with the album's more freak show/demented circus-like atmospherics. Arcturus’ La Masquerade Infernale and Sirius’ Spectral Transition- Dimension Sirius with a quirky Eastern European vibe is a good comparison.
Though listed with 15 tracks, only 9 are actual songs as the other 6 are well done interludes and breaks between songs that add to the playful but menacing ambience the album delivers. At its heart the album is majestic symphonic black metal but with a sneer and a skip. The sweeping tremolo riffs are often littered with unpredictable bursts of quirky and avant-garde spasms of enjoyment. For example, the title track includes an unexpected, strange little vocal tangent a minute or so into the melodic majesty and “Ship of Fools on Its Way to Timelessness” has a Garm-like twist. “Wings of the Silver Drake” calms things down a bit with some flute laced mid paced marching that could be Eluveitie before a soulful saxophone kicks in (which also tastefully reappears in "Farewell to the Flesh”).
Personal favorite “Romans 1580” has haughty bursts of almost hokey, Sigh -like keys and militaristic pounding war drums that befit a parade welcoming a Legion home from Gaul. And second favorite track, “Jeke Mongol Ulus” is a Viking (Mongol?) metal track complete with mid song folky romp before the album winds down with a couple of slower instrumental tracks (“Silencio y Tranquilidad” and “Silencio”) making for a band and album that defines quality over quantity.
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