Ascension
The Dead of the World


2.4
average

Review

by Xenophanes STAFF
December 30th, 2014 | 32 replies


Release Date: 12/24/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: If you only listen to 100 "crushing" albums with "killer riffs" this year, make this your 101st.

Ascension have always been a band completely of the moment. Without relying on throwbacks or "old school" aesthetic, these German metallers have always managed to sound strikingly modern, congealing with the glut of black metal bands popping up like weeds. It is to their benefit, however, to latch on to such a trend. Brushing off the more caustic aspects of the genre has allowed them to find moderate success from just about every group within the metal community. This is thanks in part to how easily Ascension are able to pull from a wide variety of modern day metal influences. The result is not what one would expect.

To be quite frank, Ascension are a faceless and souless sort of band. They're the black metal equivalent to the discount CDs you'd find in those vats in Wal-Mart. It's hard to figure out why they have never truly "nailed" what they were going for. After all, their latest has all the makings of a cross-over hit. Sweeping tracks are filled with thrash laden passages, while classic death metal beat downs pop up every now and again. Keyboards and pummeling drums help fill the incredibly meaty production. Yes, The Dead of the World hits every mark and then some. Never does it play it to safe nor does it lose itself to contrived exploration.

And perhaps there lies the issue. The Dead of the World, well, doesn't do much of anything. It's cold without being chilling; it's colorless without being dark. Atmosphere is something that is such an indelible part of the genre that its absence here is glaring. Selections such as "The Dark Tomb" blast along acerbically, with tremolo picked fury cutting its way through. Yet the fact that these adjectives come forced is telling, as there is practically nothing within these seven tracks that truly inspires. Lacking in emotion the entirety of the record glosses by without so much as an icy stab or heart wrenching cry.

Maybe it's a little harsh to proclaim The Dead of the World, and by that right, Ascension so blasé. The band doesn't do anything too terribly poorly. The vocals have a deep, earthy quality to them, while the rest of the band melds together seamlessly. And honestly in another setting the production would be immaculate. It's just that one cannot help but feel like there is a true marvel hidden within Ascension; at any moment the ensemble to come together just perfectly to create something unique and inspired. Too bad The Dead of the World is anything but.



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user ratings (26)
Chart.
3.6
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
ComeToDaddy
December 29th 2014


1787 Comments


Congrats on hitting 200! Great review, I'll give this album a miss, albums so disappointingly close to something good are the worst. Couple of notes:

Lacking in emotion the entirety

I think you missed a comma there.

at any moment the ensemble to come together

Not sure if you meant to put a could/would here, a comma after "moment", or simply miswrote the sentence.

Gyromania
December 29th 2014


26503 Comments


holy shit, 200 reviews eh? congrats eli

ExplosiveOranges
December 29th 2014


4408 Comments


Summary is lol. Congrats on 200 reviews, though!

Judio!
December 30th 2014


8434 Comments


Summary reminds me of that Sunbather soundoff

EDIT: Well, not anymore.

Derkyle
December 30th 2014


202 Comments


Congrats on the 200th!! Excellent review as well. I don't really care much for Black Metal so i'll be staying away from this release.

SpiritCrusher2
December 30th 2014


6105 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I found this to be an absolutely crushing beast of an album with excellent guitar work

emester
December 30th 2014


8251 Comments


first record was pretty good.not sure what i think of this one yet

SpiritCrusher2
December 30th 2014


6105 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

that riff 3 mins in Death's Golden Temple is my riff of the year

Relinquished
December 30th 2014


39071 Comments


emphasis on "my"

Evreaia
December 30th 2014


5071 Comments


I really liked this one.

SpiritCrusher2
December 30th 2014


6105 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

well, depends what are you looking for I guess. I like to be crushed by sweet riffs lol, and if the songwriting is interesting and varied like here, I find it really enjoyable. although I agree that it's a bit lacking in atmosphere department. my rating would be like 3.8 at this point

Crysis
Emeritus
December 30th 2014


17368 Comments


Yeah this seems kinda run of the mill

SpiritCrusher2
December 30th 2014


6105 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

haha I'm glad I inspired that new summary, I think it's actually gonna attract more people that way.

nobody complains about the new Dead Congregation album, hell it made #6 on staff list, yet it's basically just a "crushing" album with "killer riffs"





zaruyache
December 31st 2014


20387 Comments


I liked their first album, but this didn't really do it for me. :-(

Digging: Forest - Like a Blaze Above the Ashes

ChoccyPhilly
January 4th 2015


11794 Comments


Congrats on the 200 reviews, man and I pretty much agree with everythin you said

Digging: Bliss Signal - Bliss Signal

thacoconut94
January 6th 2015


1497 Comments


Love the review summary haha

SowingSeason
Moderator
January 7th 2015


29589 Comments


Nice summary and review. Don't worry, my 200th review was an Imagine Dragons 2.5 so I guess unceremonious milestones are trending.

Digging: Copeland - Blushing

Aids
January 7th 2015


24455 Comments


that summary is absolutely marvelous

Agoremageddon
January 8th 2015


12 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

For those of you that read a review and decide to pass on an album...all I can say is...Really? Don't let

ones view altar or blind yours. Listen, then decide for yourself.

Derkyle
January 9th 2015


202 Comments


Maybe some of us don't like black metal



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