It’s reached boiling point – Akitsa keep on putting out shi
tty black metal and I keep on enjoying it. Last year’s Au Crepuscule wasn’t very good but I bought it anyway, and now I play it pretty regularly. Regardless, Akitsa obviously don’t give a fu
ck what I think and have released a new EP, again putting a few drips of wet anticipation down my leg. Auprès de la mort, triomphant!
keeps things as lo-fi as they have ever been, all while putting together a sharply contrasting black metal record. In relation to its tracks, the EP creates a three-way juxtaposition, with each song displaying an element of Akitsa’s music in all of its stark and naked glory.
‘La grotte des anges déchus’ comprises the entirety of the A-side, being the longest individual track at six minutes. The song plays on Akitsa’s depressive black metal tendencies, though obviously it merely toes the line, never quite going over to the levels of cliché we usually experience with the genre. Distortion and repetition play a huge part in this track’s resonance, and its droning nature inarguably sticks.
The B-side has two songs, both vastly different from one another and from ‘La grotte…’ – ‘Notre avant-guerre’ is a pure example of Akitsa playing Oi within their minimal black metal aesthetic. The song's thin guitars and vocals lend themselves very much to what we would expect from the band, but the song itself is very much a simple punk composition. Closing the B-side is the title track, which is a synth-driven ambient piece in the same vein as Burzum’s shi
tty ambient albums. While I was very dubious of the track at first, its handle on melody and arrangement is actually quite satisfying.
This isn’t essential nor is it even close to Akitsa’s finest moment, but as a vehicle to further mature their own black metal sensibilities, Auprès de la mort, triomphant!
does significantly well. Fans of the band shouldn’t hesitate.