filthgrinding_scum on November 12th, 2012
Venturing forth, once again into the absolute filth of the French scene it is my utter displeasure to share with you 'Orthodoxyn' from Arkhon Infaustus. These maniacal Frenchmen have progressed and advanced massively since their last effort, perfecting their brand of sick black/death metal. 'Perdition Insabilis' whilst enjoyable was part of their evolution from their basic black/death of Filth Catalyst. Gone are the basic blasphemous images, giving way to a much more refined ideal, replete with more intelligent lyrics and some decisively delectable imagery.
Yet another band signed to the label of which I hold in esteem beyond all others; Norma Evangelium Diaboli. Arkhon's members are a veritable force to be reckoned with, with members from Arkhon having been part of such unholy conflagrations as Antaeus, Hell Militia, Love Lies Bleeding, Neo Inferno 262 and Diapsiquir to name but a few.
The album leans more towards the death side in its sound, thick, heavy guitars and bass, technical drumming and lots of death vocals (this will become very clear halfway through 'When They Have Called' as it reaches an almost slam slowness and heaviness). However, this is just one small feature of Arkhon as a band, their brand of death is infused with some of the most opaque blackness imaginable; yes, they have death vocals but for added sickness they have an additional vocalist covering the black section, giving a somewhat unique vocal experience as opposed to the traditional one or the other, or the occasional change-up between styles, Arkhon utilise both vocalists in varying patterns, yet always with the most devastating effect ('Trigrammaton' for example). Riffs on the album are of the 'Orthodox Satanic' school of black (something I hate to categorise in, yet it is becoming a means of identification as more bands try to emulate the sound of bands on Norma Evangelium Diaboli, End All Life, Debemur Morti & Osmose - probably the labels with the most Orthodox Satanic bands signed), they are intense, melodic, incomparable and progressive. As with most death records, the bass is apparent; thick, warm and adding extra 'heaviness' to the mix. The drums on 'Orthodoxyn' are resplendent, it is of note that the drummer played with 'Antaeus' for a time and as such you should expect nothing more than extreme competence and originality. Speaking from a compositional perspective, one thing that makes Arkhon's music sound 'wrong' (for want of a better word) is their use of strange time signatures, instruments that seem to fall in and out of time with the drums, all adding another layer of grime and depravity.
Lyrically the band have become much clearer on what they want to write about and where their music is headed, previous efforts were 'hit or miss', yet lyrics on 'Orthodoxyn' are strong, espousing the bands beliefs on their ideas for Theistic Satanism or 'Orthodox' Satanism; hence 'Orthodoxyn'. Lyrics deal with Kabbala, Kliffot ('Behind the Husk of Faith' referencing the Kliffot and Sephirot) and the Satanic ideals within these systems.
Another fantastic French band signed to Norma Evangelium Diaboli, an utterly sick record, with enough death to keep deathheads happy and plenty of black grimness, it should please both camps. One thing worth bearing in mind however about Arkhon is that although you may think you know death/black from Belphegor and Behemoth, you know nothing until you have heard Arkhon, it is truly perverse and only those mentally ill enough will be able to revel in its supreme degeneracy.
Unfortunately 'on-hold' at the moment due to internal band problems (as mentioned in previous reviews, as incestuous as the Parisian scene may be they don't always seem to play nice with each other...), hopefully a follow-up will be forged as this band have a lot more malady to inflict upon us all.
Highlights: 'Le particle de dieu', 'Trigrammaton' - 'When They Have Called' - 'Magnificat Satanas' (3 songs envisioned conceptually as a trilogy) and 'Annunciation to the Holy Ghost'.
(Originally written for baileysmmcreamy.blogspot.com)
Hircine on December 13th, 2008
Supreme Satanic Extremity
As a band that hasn't evolved but also kind of has, Arkhon Infaustus have departed from the generic shock value of their earlier efforts, which had song title which read like Dimmu Borgir rejects (The Black Succubus Whores for example) and arrived at the much more delectable satanic imagery that began with Perdition Insanabilis and now graces the cover and lyric sheet of Orthodoxyn.
Arkhon Infaustus, rather interestingly employ two vocalists, one doing deep death metal growls and the other mid-pitch black metal shrieks, which makes them pull of the death/black metal sub-sub genre better than if they simply employed one. It also seems at times that the growls are used as support to the black metal shrieks, which adds a great emphasis to them.
The first thing that strikes the listener when they spin Orthodoxyn is just how evil it sounds, with guitars rapidly changing pitch, and an ever present feeling of menace lurking behind the wall of sound. While the rest of the musicianship on this album is typical of extreme metal, the drumming on this album, rather than following the tired pattern of 'blastbeats eternal' found in extreme metal and is a nice highlight on the album.
The two tracks that really stand out on this album are probably 'Annunciation To the Holy Ghost' and 'Behind the Husk of Faith'. The former of these two is probably the most evil sounding on the whole album, and the most musically interesting, while the latter has an interesting sample, before this brief period of 'mellow' is quickly destroyed by the closest thing to a solo that Arkhon Infaustus get, a massive noise wall that reeks of evil and violence. Of special note is the track 'Le Particle de Dieu', which is the only song on the album to be sung in French, the bands native language. Sadly however, it fails to grasp the listener for long enough.
I would happily recommend this album to anyone with an interest in black or death metal, and could easily be counted amongst one of the top albums that was released in 2007.
ShadowSouled on December 31st, 2007
Unrelenting assault on the senses
To introduce this band to the unwary listener, Arkhon Infaustus hail from France and play a form of barbaric death/black metal. My first experience with this band was a handful of songs from Perdition Insanabilis that I had obtained about a year ago, which I had dismissed as not too bad but somewhat forgettable. When news reached me that they had released a new album, I was intrigued enough to check it out. In restrospect, it would have been a great mistake to ignore this release.
The first aspect of this album that I noticed is that almost every song is played back-to-back to each other, without some sort of separation between the tracks. This leaves the impression that the band is attempting --and managing-- to pummel the listener into the ground. The guitar work is highly original, razor-sharp, and more progressive than their previous material; as a matter of fact, on more than one occasion, a few riffs reminded me of Deathspell Omega's Si Monumentum Requires, Circumspice, while still retaining a death metal aesthetic if this makes any sense. The drumming courtesy of Azk.6 is fast and furious, and only lets up occasionally for moody, dark passages. There is a lot of dual vocal work, either mid pitched black metal rasp, or deep death metal grunts; the lyrics, which are far more intelligent than similar death/black metal bands (Belphegor anyone?) are written mostly in English, although the whole of "La Particule de Dieu" is in French. The most interesting part of this album is the feeling it creates within the listener; beyond simply the "evil" feel of black metal or the "gore and splatter" of death metal, it evokes a feeling of filth. This is the sickest, dirtiest, most diseased piece of work that has clawed its way from the bowels of Hell in recent years.
If you enjoy twisted black metal with a death metal edge, I highly recommend this album to you. Orthodoxyn is a guaranteed unpleasant listen; This is a filthy, filthy album, and not for the faint of heart. Consider this your only warning.
ravenhearted on November 17th, 2007
Arkhon Infaustus - Orthodoxyn
Lay back beneath a warm blanket, have yourself a nice sip of tea with your grandmother, and drift into the soothing world of ARKHON INFAUSTUS. Then smash the tea-can over your grannys head while strangling her with the now puke- and blood-stained blanket, simultaneously murdering and raping her in praise of Satan, as her skin burns into a black, caffeinated crisp.
As you might have deciphered from my little anecdote, this isn't music for tree-huggers and bed-wetters. Known for being an unstoppable force of brutal Blackened Death Metal, these very angry Frenchmen are an chaotic ultra-fast wall of sound that ravages you at dangerously high speeds likely to pound you into next week. Equally brutal tempo-changes creates a epic quality that seems larger than life, rising up to crush all the squirming worms in its path. It's a listening experience that takes time adjusting to, but the music is both complex and layered enough to make it worth the several spins it takes to fully enjoy it. Don't look for a trace of melodies or peaceful interludes though, there is no room for breathers here whatsoever, and only death is real.
Usually I'm not a huge fan of these rampaging break-neck speed bands, as I think good songwriting is often sacrificed in favor of blastbeats and ear-wrecking cluttered riffs. Therefore, the added depth of the compositions found on “Orthodoxyn” are a refreshing exempt from the norm, as there always seems to be new nuances to discover after each additional listen. Organized chaos seldom sounds this good, and if aggression has a voice I think ARKHON INFAUSTUS are getting really damn close to defining it. An honorable mention goes out to Satan, as his acolytes have proven once again that nobody embodies uncompromising hatred quite like Him.
(Online November 17, 2007)
Orthodoxyn track list
|2||When They Have Called||06:11|
|4||Behind the Husk of Faith||05:14|
|5||La Particule de Dieu||05:34|
|8||Annunciation to the Holy Ghost||05:05|
|DK Deviant||Vocals, Guitars|
|666 Torturer||Vocals, Bass|
|Toxik Harmst||Guitars, Vocals (additional) (track 5)|