Aug. 6, 2018


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The Pitch: A progressive, technical death metal album 2 years in the making from Tacoma, WA's Aethereus via The Artisan Era. FFO: The Zenith Passage, Vale Of Pnath, Inferi

What I Like: They say that patience is a virtue, and this holds true when it comes to good music. Perhaps progressive music most of all. Rather than cranking out new material on an assembly line, Aethereus have wisely taken their time with Absentia...and it shows. These 9 tracks are airtight regardless of length, whether they run two minutes or seven. I sense a serious attention to detail when it comes to composition and arranging each movement, and the performances are delivered with replicant-like precision. Such meticulous material can run the risk of turning cold, but thankfully Absentia is brimming with soul and lush with atmosphere. Over the course of these 42 minutes, the album covers a broad spectum of emotional and stylistic textures from the raging tech death of "Writhe" to the sorrowful, jazz-infused prog of "That Which Is Left Behind."

Critiques: If I'm comparing to other similar albums this year, there is still a certain infectious energy and touch of innovation that the likes of Revenant and Where Owls Know My Name have over this one. It's a matter of a few decimal points, but it makes a difference. To further compete, the band will need to really pull on what makes them a unique entity.

The Verdict: Aethereus are at once as brutal as Inferi and as explorative as Rivers Of Nihil. The guitars, bass, drums, and vocals each deliver top notch performances in isolation, while building so much more as a team. Incredibly consistent and endlessly relistenable, Absentia is an album that you do not want to miss out on. Get it Friday.

Flight's Fav's: Cascades Of Light, Writhe, Absentia

- Review by FlightOfIcarus

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