Review – Haeresiarchs of Dis: Denuntiatus Cinis

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Review – Haeresiarchs of Dis: Denuntiatus Cinis
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Haeresiarchs of Dis: Denuntiatus Cinis
Black Metal
Moribund Records
October 12th, 2010
Release legth: 1:07:11
CD Baby
Myspace
Website

When you hear the location San Jose, California, one of the last things you would think of is Black Metal. Well, Haeresiarchs of Dis is a one-man Black Metal project that originates from that location, and the music is far from some of the stereotypical concepts of bands that happen to come out of California. It also manages to stand out nicely amongst the ocean of one man Black Metal acts with it’s great production quality, intensity, anger, and all around well composed material. All of this is a good sign that this release of just over sixty seven minutes of Blackened chaos is well worth it, and in the long run, it very well is.

First of all, the production quality of this release is simply not raw in any means. The sound on Denuntiatus Cinis is a crisp recording that many would expect today’s releases to have, but not clear enough that it takes away any of the bite that the music has. The drumming is powerful and realistic, utilizing machine gun-like double bass kicks and well placed cymbols and snares to add to the chaos that the guitars produce. However, for those who find that a more raw production quality is what makes a Black Metal album these days, the vocals retain that feel on this release. The traditional wailing vocal style is here, but sounds faint and further back in the mix. This works well to create a haunting atmosphere to the release that coincides with the angered music that this act plays. Aside all of that, there are some keyboards that are much lower in the mix then the vocals, being just loud enough to be heard that sometimes you don’t even realize they are there, but you still pick up on this. This is one of the more fantastic elements of the album, as these keyboards wind up just sounding natural, as if it is just being produced by something on the song instead of just being another instrument all together. The track “Intent the Augury” really pushes the haunting atmosphere with them,

Outside of a few tracks, many of the actual songs on this album start with the title “Intent”. Honestly, this is unclear why, as any information about it was not provided, but for the most part it seems to make this release a bit of a conceptual one. “Median Existere” and “Ad Baculum” are also regular songs, but don’t start with “Intent” obviously, but yet there is “Intent the Succedaneum”, which is actually a slower paced instrumental. Of course, “Bemoan the Fallen” winds up actually being a song too, but it’s an acoustic piece that is performed in a folk manner with slightly harshed vocals that still retain that faded out sound. Sadly, this appears literally out of nowhere, and while it does sound good, it kind of puts a halt to the flow of the album, even if it was composed to go along with one of the songs prior or after it. This little interlude comes off more like some kind of pirate-based acoustic piece just by how the vocals are done, but it also gives off more of a story telling feel on a beach near the ocean (perhaps by a pirate) as the song closes witho the sounds of waves rushing up on to or against something with thunder crackling in the distance. Another odd aspect to this release comes during “Ad Baculum”, which sounds as if “Bemoan the Fallen” had been composed more as an introduction to that song, starting off much lighter, and within the same musical vein. However, the song picks right up into the brutal sound that adorns the record, but later in the track the vocal style comes ot a much more higher volume level set of clean singing vocals, giving this track a slightly pagan feel through how they are performed.

While there are plenty of instrumentals of the release, as well as interludes, some of them manage to suit the album well and carry on the flow through pushing the haunting atmosphere more then the chaotic vibe of the album. While it may be slightly drawn out, “Entry” makes for a fantastic starting point to the album, and “Intent the Succedaneum” has some great ambience to it, as well as a small acoustic piece near the end. “Nine Days They Fell”, of course, is a little different. This interlude is a spoken word track, featuring an audio sample of someone performing a speech in the background, with an altered voice speaking over this speech as if it were the devil himself talking. Of course, this leads to some conflicts as you don’t know which speaker to listen to, and the distorted vocals can’t really be disciphered sometimes. Luckily, the actual songs on here are typically much longer then standard songs, and the compositions to them are so well done that they feel as if they go by at half that pace. Intense songs like “Intent the Proem”, “Intent Canticle”, as well as the breath taking “Intent Postremo Enclosure Oisorum”, really stand out and make the album stand out through it’s chaotic passages and vocals.

In the long run, Denuntiatus Ciris is a highly enjoyable one-man Black Metal release. Haeresiarchs of Dis manages to pull out all the stops, and, though there are a few bups in the road here and there with the instrumentals/interludes mentioned above, much of the album has enough fury and ambience to them to keep the listener happy. This release captures everything that makes the underground Black Metal scene such a powerful force, but presents it in a professional manner that opens it up to many who can’t stand some of the more god awful “raw” production releases out there, while the clearer musical sound still retains most of the ambience that underground releases of this style have. If you’re a fan of well done Black Metal, then there should be no reason that Denuntiatus Ciris by Haeresiarchs of Dis should be passed up.


01. Entry – 2:07
02. Intent the Proem – 8:31
03. The Respite – 2:32
04. Intent Canticle – 6:13
05. Intent the Augury – 8:30
06. Bemoan the Fallen – 1:54
07. Median Existere – 7:34
08. Nine Days They Fell – 4:15
09. Intent Concupiscence – 4:19
10. Ad Baculum – 7:04
11. Intent the Succedaneum – 3:08
12. Inent Postremo Enclosure Orsorum – 8:37
13. Exeunt – 2:28
Initial Pressing Score: 9/10

Haeresiarchs of Dis
Haeresiarchs of Dis

Digital review copy of this release provided by Moribund Records.