Quadrivium - Adversus

9 songs
40:00 minutes
***** ***


In medieval times Quadrivium was the mastering of the four arts arithmetic, geometry, music, and astronomy. Lately, a Norwegian black metal band consider themselves also a part of the expression and released their debut album Adversus.

The six-piece doesn’t lack self-confidence and describes their genre as avant-garde black metal. Avant-garde should mean adding something new to the genre, but Quadrivium’s symphonic elements have been done for instance by their contemporaries Arcturus a decade earlier. This shouldn’t mean that Quadrivium have failed. On the contrary! Friends of symphonic black metal will have a field day with these great compositions full of hidden details. Quadrivium manage to combine in a compact way aggressive, dramatic and atmospheric part. At times their sound turns out to be so dark that it would be an ideal soundtrack for a ghost train ride. The CD contains seven regular songs and two shorter instrumentals that are kept more on the quiet side. I prefer Into The Void where the thoughtful songwriting works best. The other pieces aren’t bad either but never quite reach that same surprising element.

Quadrivium have released a respectable debut and have the potential to be among the top players in the black metal league. They only need to become more humble and drop the avant-garde tag which is false advertising in this case. If they learn to mature their songwriting, we can expect something spectacular in the near future.

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