De Contemplande Morte

Ajna Offensive 2007

While many of their contemporaries in Sweden are content to play their black metal at a blistering pace (Marduk, Dark Funeral, Funeral Mist, etc.) forsaking nearly all atmosphere, Mortuus approach their compositions with a different viewpoint.  It would appear that to them the music can be imbued with more (un)life when all the instruments are allowed to breath rather than smothering the listener with millions of blast beats.  That doesn't mean they can't speed along like said contemporaries as you will notice by some of the white lightning fast guitar passages on Astral Pandemonium but even that song slows it down into the mid-paced range where Mortuus is most effective.  With the Constant Fall of Seraphim takes all the qualities of the impenetrable void and fleshes it out over a skeleton of creeping riffs and ritualistic chimes.  Throughout this 7 and a half minute ordeal Tehom's vocals speak in ghastly tones of an unholy world controlled by the pulsating heart of the Leviathan.  As a matter of fact, lyrically speaking Mortuus dwells on another level with deep spiritual implications and a poetry of biblical obscurity.  Seldom do I see lyrics equal to these.  Rebirth of the Sterile Triad of Six picks up the tempo slightly and stands out as one of my favorite tracks with its low end rhythmic riffing over which a cold and melodic lead drifts effortlessly and speaks in musical images of northern glaciers.  But like true masters they have saved the best for last as Supplication for the Demise of All paints broad strokes with a dissonant main riff marching segments which lead us towards eternal damnation.  Mortuus bring a much needed sense of individualism to a cluttered Swedish scene through their use of slow yet atmospheric black metal blasphemy.  This album is true death worship and it drips with morbidity from every note.