Akroma - Seth

10 songs
59:32 minutes
***** ****


A little over two years ago French metal band Akroma convinced their audience with their wilful debut Sept, a concept album about the seven deadly sins. Their new album comes with the homophone title Seth, has once again a concept, this time the ten plagues from the Bible that harassed old Egypt.

Like in the past, the five musicians from Nancy don’t come up with easily digestible sounds. The opener L’eau change en sang starts with prominent blast beats that show that Akroma are an extreme metal band hard to categorise. The vocals flirt with black metal, but the music is full of playful details that add a progressive touch. The hectic performance with a fondness for chaos and power comes with countless mood changes. Occasional – mostly female – spoken words parts are oases of calm to counter the dramatic outbursts that will rip you out of your contemplation. This works especially well on Les sauterelles which nearly mirrors the insanity of Savatage’s Hall of the Mountain King era. Les moustiques is another highlight which comes quickly to the point, but then veers into a darkly creepy path that comes totally unexpected. The concluding Les ténèbres also starts out fiercely but ends on a dramatic note like some kind of radio play.

To get every little detail out of Seth demands a sufficient degree of attention and the fitting mood from the listener. Akroma’s sophomore effort is an intensive and challenging but also unique experience where everything – songwriting, production, instrumentation, arrangements – works perfectly. Akroma have once again created an album brimming with ideas that open-minded people will have no way to ignore.

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