ARS MACABRA
III (2013) By xDemoNx

The third album of Ars Macabra named III is one of those albums that leave the listener with his mouth open. Not so much those who are listening to the band for the first time, but especially their older fans. The Italians since 1998 that they are together, they have released three demos, one split and three full length albums. III was released in January of 2013 and it contains one instrumental and nine Black Metal compositions of overall duration of about fifty minutes. Having listened to their previous releases, I knew that the style of the band is moving around the Scandinavian, violent and fast Black Metal and I have to admit that I didn’t expect much more from them. So at the first listen it left me with my mouth open as here it seems like another band is playing but with the same old name.

So Ars Macabra, here, they present us well played, fresh "Orthodox" Black Metal. The music here follows the already classic pattern of the "orthodox" Black Metal, that is fast, chaotic music which combines feelings of hatred and violence with personal, almost depressing feelings and all these under a dark, misty and thick atmosphere. The rhythm mainly is fast and chaotic with a lot of slow, atmospheric passages full of feelings and images. The riffs are quite interesting and they have a big variety as we will come across fast and violent, tremolo riffs, quite slow, dark and atmospheric ones, while the compositions also don’t lack of those medium speed heavy passages. The structure of the tracks is good. The quite smooth changes inside the compositions, they make the tracks interesting, they avoid the repeating of the same ideas over and over and they don’t tire the listener.

The performance of the band regarding the instruments is flawless. The first thing that impressed me is the bass. This album is one of the very few ones in which the bass can be clearly heard from the beginning to the end. The bass is heavy and solid, while its lines are very interesting. The guitars are clean, without mistakes, they deliver the atmosphere and the sentiments flawlessly. The drums also have very interesting lines, putting out violence, passion, intensity, they fill the sound and they give depth to the compositions. The production is clean and slightly bass, it puts out a heavy and dark result but without make the sound become dirty. The mixture is very good as all the instruments sound very clearly while at the same time the massive character of the compositions is maintained. The lyrics are written in English and have that typical style that we will come across into most of the “orthodox” Black Metal bands. More specifically, they speak for Satanism under the theistic approach of Satanism, they use symbols, difficult, complex structure and they are quite interesting.

The third full length album of Ars Macabra shows that the band is continuously evolving and it is moving forward combining its past with its new influences and music directions. III is not distinguished for its originality or for the special music that it presents. It reminds a lot of other bands of the genre but the music that they present us is interesting and it can offer a lot to the listener. I think that the fans of “orthodox” Black Metal you will be thrilled with this album. The rest of you, it worth the listen.

1. Cursed Paradigm 05:36
2. Fire of Seraphim 04:22
3. Cerum Luciferi 06:35
4. Illuminati 05:00
5. Ubique Daemon Ubique Deus 05:37
6. Panpsychic Khaos 04:50
7. Deneb (Alpha Cygni) 01:42
8. Thanatos Projection 05:33
9. Manifestation of the Curse 05:38
10. With Fires of Titan 04:35