Album Review :~ Helleborus - Saprophytic Divinations

The obsession with anything outre is not exactly a novelty in the metal scene, but occasionally it will assume a much more complex and nuanced dimension owing to musicians who insist on addressing such topics with utmost maturity and profundity. Numerous bands have created albums based around their own ideas that take insight from creative writing, but few bands will dedicate the entire span of a release to the relevant interpretation of the belief With the emergence and escalation of the novel and notorious tendency. In this extreme metal music genre first wave black metal and second-wave black metal bands are full of reverence.

While some excellent, unique band attempting to sell their flavor of the month band to potential listeners, there are some that simply exist outside of pre-existing molds and take a few years to realize their full potential and thusly grasp the imaginations of many who are fortunate enough to witness their evolve talent.  When it comes to symphonic, melodic in terms of black metal bands United Staes is usually not the first place that comes to mind to a vast majority of people. Shadowy, Sexual mysticism, Qabalah, The esoteric based US veterans Helleborus's latest offering is cut above the rest. A legacy in black metal as genuine and mighty as Helleborus's is difficult to achieve. Spawning from the depths of Knowledge, Esoteric Literature, Qabalah, mysticism is the newest record from orthodox black metal Helleborus - Saprophytic Divinations. Helleborus this US group married the ritualistic fury of esoteric, occult black metal with a creeping dose of mystical, ominous, frigid, sinister madness. The atmosphere and tightly plotted albums were based on mystical incantation while still employing their own take on black metal, a phenomenal addition to the Black metal roster.

The US has solidified its status as one of the premier centers of black metal over the course of the last decade or so. Crafting debut full-length albums of blistering darkness Helleborus play traditionally influenced black metal with symphonic, melodic and devotion and deftly navigate black metal’s token atmospherics for pureblooded passion. On this year Colorado-based US black metallers Helleborus unveiled their sophomore full-length album entitled “Saprophytic Divinations”  with 50:09 min running time along with hellish, spine-chilling, skin-ripping artistry. This new album consists of 9 tracks. Helleborus was formed in 2014. They have developed into an independent mystical, occult and grand entity with their predecessor release. Now I am straight going to the point about this new opus.

When at first checked out their manifestation I was overwhelmed and infused by the track because of authentic sound, ferocious, mature and from then I was clinched that I have to check this whole for sure material and this would be a savage beast.  Black metal’s broodier bands, United States' underground veteran's Helleborus's latest effort "Saprophytic Divinations" is orthodox, nihilistic presence is felt strongly right from the start of this release as well cherish impressive songwriting as well apocalyptic and sinister. Helleborus delivers a distinctly experimental, atmospherically evil, vivid, symphonic. horrifying form of black metal. Playing the type of scathing, otherworldly black metal. Their each and every musician did a fantastic job on this album in a radiant way and It’s really great when your high hopes are not misplaced. Helleborus manages to strike the right balance between raw, atavistic aggression and a more sophisticated, occult approach. This whole album reflects the grand diversity of sound brought together on this opus. It is really not easy to describe their musical style. Helleborus creates a constantly shapeshifting maelstrom of crushing chaos and disorder. A synthesis of dissonant sounds and disparate styles all combined in one bold, enlightened display of unbound creativity Despite the often crushing, fast, furious, cacophonous black metal assaults with a lots of segments of slower tempo too where Helleborus combines a symphonic, melodic, mysterious, introspective passages with cavernous drum thrashes, whirlwind guitars and those effective rasps. Appreciate their cavernous symphonic arrangements, this release will transport you to a hellish trip like no other.

Well, their latest incantations opening track starts with symphonic slow build and eerie atmospheric vibe, with some clean vox around the tones then suddenly the sound evolves into heavy, powerful, bestial grunt followed by intricate, fast, delicate riffs work, blast beating, fast soundscapes with onslaught of savage guitar and a wall of spectacular, relentless drums and then segues with evil vocals. The layered tapestry of slightly trebly and heavily laden with reverb, duo-tonal whirlwind of guitar noise laced with aggression, deliberate cadence and progression seasonings supporting the likewise crooning, almost moaning deeply in the throat, high-pitched, duo vocals drown a bit in the almost unhuman-like furiously fast though muffled drumming with ripping and snorting bass, although this evolves to a more dynamic sound on the rest of the album. Their whole composition and musical style are impeccable also borrow great atmosphere with sour, dissonant riffs work. All instruments are dynamic, clearly discerned, yet none stand out amidst the cacophony and indeed they have far surpassed it. 

This new releases whole compositions are extremely filthy and unsettling pieces of sinister, grim euphoria and unearthly ambiance. “Saprophytic Divinations”  commences chronologically invigorating and destructive. Their distinct entity infused me by a lot. "Saprophytic Divinations" bury the listener in an unrelenting cadence of tortured riffs that dance around the blistering drumming of Brent Boutte, while singer S.W.H recites the prophetic lyrics of the eternal night through the tracks of elite black metal. They produce unique kinds of black metal but at the same time, the vocals and other parts of the riffing are straight forward brutal, ferocious simultaneously. Honestly, after a multiple listen this album just blew me away with their ethereal abyss,multi-dimensional, the multi-layered, ominous musical style. "Saprophytic Divinations" perversely brims with an illuminating light, devouring the cosmic light of life and scurrying through the sort of black metal whose radiance is so obsidian as to consume energy as austerely as it expends it. Each musician has exuded tremendous, cohesive effort on this album with excellent diligence and nailed it. Their guitar work is the very blood that flows through the track, often adrenalized and near-boiling. Their riffs, whether pleasantly discordant or catchy as all hell and matching each other in both despondency and unremitting confidence. Honing their underlying nihilistic creed to awe-inspiring levels, this is a mixture of classic, mid-paced black metal, and equilibrium-ruining lurches. The cosmic sphere falls from this track. At this moment which is eternal yet transitory, new and pure energy grows within the womb of chaos, and which ignites the source of a new aeon, a flame needless of air to exist. Helleborus really does the trick for the overall murky, mysterious, Juxtapositions of darkness and light, a misty sound that comes from the music. A new true god that breeds its new self, purified and sanctified in chaos without an end nor a beginning. I highly cite and embrace this release. 

This is filled with a slew of cadence, apocalyptic, pummeling, ominous, hellish, powerful riffs work. As well bass line up is whopping, intense, strong, rumbling, slithering. Drumming, the percussion line up is bleak, frantic, solid, clattering and powerful. The guitars are solely focused on creating a grandiose atmosphere but predominantly rely on walls of sound and swerving rhythms. In each track morbidly delicious, macabre, soaring, dark eerie, ghastly riffs, bass lineups matched in a good manner. Perfectly balanced in the mix, all elements shine alike, creating a very intense and poignant aural abuse. This whole album sound delivers a dissonant, grim feeling, sinister, melodic, gruesome black metal with raw emotion and pure energy. “Saprophytic Divinations” endures the beauty of black metal. This album indulges strong songwriting and brilliant musicianship. This album has a hypnotic effect on the listener. Vocals decently large voice that does well for Helleborus. Especially his menacing and hoarse voice are excellent. Vocals howling scream, immense, deep rasps voice emerged on this album in a good manner adds a thick murky sound and intertwined perfectly with their utterly spellbinding, obtuse, bizarrely arrogant, mysterious, fully blistering black metal, a distant musical style with a lot of melodic accompaniment and embedded perfectly. Their sound, the musicianship is absolute prime, with every song unleashing a seething torrent of scalding dissonance and insidious melody, scorching distortion, and barbaric, blasphemous invective, all of which combine to produce an overarching atmosphere of creeping, crippling dread. Overall you will get a sinister, gloomy, desolate, mysterious, symphonic black metal vibe from this whole album. I really worship this band.

Each song has energy, fluency and draws a savage landscape. Stand out tracks are all of them. Every song, every hellish, skin-stripping riff, and vile vocal incantation is delivered with the righteous fury and unwavering conviction of the true believer. The vision of the album cover is Pretty neat, solid, atrocious, grisly, macabre, gorgeously hideous. Overall “Saprophytic Divinations” whole album is Spectacular, engrossing, significant and goes all the way through with a relentless rage from the beginning. Helleborus is surely the apotheosis of everything. The sound has a depth to it, with brief distortion. "Saprophytic Divinations" is an elite black metal sophistication in their music without sacrificing the feral, ugly core of the style. This album sounds so authentic and a truly remarkable sonic journey from beginning to end. "Saprophytic Divinations" is a deep and winding journey throughout the mysterious and stifling occult. Indeed this album is such a true gem of this year. The production is absolutely impeccable, capable of handling both the massive atmospheric, melodic and gargantuan heft. Outstanding another one release of this year so far .“Saprophytic Divinations” is shattering culmination in black metal evolution. Helleborus can effectively capture a pristine essence of bloodthirsty transcendent abandon, disenchanted delirium, or perhaps even a very inhuman strain of mystical experience. The United States bruisers still possess all the necessary skills and hard-won experience to put younger, newcomer challengers in their place With " Saprophytic Divinations", Helleborus writes another chapter in their book of successive masterpieces. This is astral projection through a viscous dense black cosmic ocean.  The band's ability to craft tasteful crescendos, catchy melodies while unleashing very ethereal atmospherics With top-notch and stellar execution throughout and a clear vision behind the music Helleborus have nicely elevated the dialogue around the band. Helleborus realizes and re-imagines the great flurry of transcendent black metal and looking down from the pulpit with satisfaction on the desolation wreaked by their immense slab of rasping black metal.  The stuff nightmares are made up of, there is no escape as Juniper Legacy’s ferociously heavy rhythm shows that this is an album that will haunt you, be you asleep or awake. If you looking for something different, epic this album will take you on a sophisticated and weighty black metal journey into another universe where music has the power to transcend the spoken word.

My Rating – 4.9/5   Review done by - Souvik Basu. Published on 16/12/2019

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