Friday, December 20, 2013

Review: Malignant Asceticism - Ascensum Serpens

Little to nothing is known about Chile based black metal band Malignant Asceticism. The four member group founded themselves in 2011 and have released two prior demos; one in their year of formation and the other followed up in 2012. The members of the band only go by their initials and there are no websites for them or band photos of the line-up. Another mystery that was delivered unto my inbox by the label that is Blood Harvest. Ascensum Serpens is the latest release by Malignant Asceticism and has been delivered in the format of an EP.

Genre: Black Metal
Label: Blood Harvest
Release Date: September 13th, 2013
  1. Seventh Breath
  2. The Black Dance
Total Playtime: 10 minutes, 16 seconds

Official Website















Rating: 8.0/10








Little to nothing is known about Chile based black metal band Malignant Asceticism. The four member group founded themselves in 2011 and have released two prior demos; one in their year of formation and the other followed up in 2012. The members of the band only go by their initials and there are no websites for them or band photos of the line-up. Another mystery that was delivered unto my inbox by the label that is Blood Harvest. Ascensum Serpens is the latest release by Malignant Asceticism and has been delivered in the format of an EP.

The first thing that listeners will take note of is that this is an old school natured black metal record. The album is full of fuzz and has an awful production quality to it that causes the snare drum to sound like a pot from the kitchen. Without looking most audiences would find themselves guessing the release date for thsi content to be between 1985 - 1988. Ultimately this is what the band wanted, and it's nice to hear a throw back to venerable black metal; though the material does come with a few twists and turns that sets it apart from your straight dry cut dose of black metal. Starting off with discordant guitar picking that couples harmoniously with unintelligible chanting, the material soon finds itself promoting a deep, woody bass solo before it is lost in an inferno of blast beat drumming and down-strummed guitar chords that boarder on the brink of noisecore at fleeting moments. Given that there are two guitars, one guitar almost always rests on tremolo picking segments somewhere in the background or one side of the speakers. While this is almost completely typical for olden black metal, there are various incorporations into the compositions that break up the tedium of the tracks; whether it be the bass being brought back to the front of the mix while the guitars overlay it with bizarre picking and the drums rest their beats on the cymbals and hi-hats while releasing an infernal assault of double bass kicks or a slower tempo section that melodically backs the shrill vocals.

Ascensum Serpens is a great ode to the black metal of old; rarely have we seen rejuvenation of this type of metal done so well and with a fresh take. Coming in at just over ten minutes, the EP feels a lot longer than it actually is which would hint that if it was a full-length presentation the material may get stale after a few tracks. However this short two track demonstration is an amazing showcase of old black metal worship, and is highly recommended for fans of the genre. You can download it for a mere $4.56 over at the Blood Harvest Bandcamp.

Digital Download Provided by: Blood Harvest

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