Black metal and France aren’t two things we would commonly fit together, but Reverence are one of the growing number of bands determined to prove that the two aren’t mutually exclusive and a French band are as capable of producing interesting experimental black metal as good as any Nordic band out there.
Formed in 1998 the band took seven years to release their debut album Industrial Metal Concept fast forward a further seven years and they are now releasing their fourth album The Asthenic Ascension.
The Asthenic Ascension is an album of nine tracks with an average length of 6.5mins per track. This said the tracks blend into each other in such a way that there is a sense of listening to one long piece of music. Taking an experimental approach with this album, Reverence have created a masterpiece of genres which are overcast in black metal but touch on a number of styles and influences.
- Symphonic – prevalent on opening track Earth, the use of strings and a haunting choral sound effect on keys sets the tone for this album. An air of desperation and tempestuous need
- Industrial – The guitar work is extremely industrial with many of the vocals having a very industrial overtone.
- Jazz – The drumming on this album whilst intense with the double kick drums also in places feels very jazz influenced and carries with it the rhythmic connection you get from this type of music.
This album can be difficult to listen to, with Psalm IV ending with a woman crying in such a way that’s really tough on you. The album gets under your skin. Gets to the places you don’t allow your mind to wander, the dark places you don’t like to think of, and once it’s there it keeps digging and drawing on your life force like a succubus.
This album isn’t a comfortable listen, but it is clever, it is good and it is pushes Reverence into the forefront of the French metal scene.
Reverence was released on April 30th by Candlelight Records