Chthe'ilist
Le Dernier Crépuscule


4.0
excellent

Review

by Xenophanes STAFF
January 17th, 2016 | 391 replies


Release Date: 2016 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Bad news for every other death metal record coming out in 2016.

It was one of my New Year's Resolution to be a little more discerning this year when picking through the seemingly endless deluge of dark, same-y metal. You can't throw a rock without hitting a death or doom record with a weird name and suitable grim cover. These records are everywhere, melding into a muddy pit much like the brown sepia artwork that adorns them.

So then why is it mid-January and I'm already breaking my resolution" Well Chthe'ilist are just that good. Their first demo Amechth'ntaas'm'rriachth (I know) dropped way back in 2012 and the band has slowly amassed a loyal, albeit small following. Not surprising considering that Chthe'ilist managed to do in a handful of rough tracks what most death acts cannot do in an entire career. Full of dread and nightmarish soundscapes the collection of songs set the stage for Le Dernier Crépuscule, the band's first major outing.

Le Dernier Crépuscule is a bruiser of a modern death metal record. Everything from the dreary cover to the thick production lends itself to a fascinating piece of metal. The hypnotic mess of guitar and bass reverberate heavily among the abyssal production, leaving the vocals to sound suitably obscured and menacing. It's the type of sound that you could actually use the word "phantasmagorical" without sounding like an utter cunt. For the most part the album is full of surprises. Just when you think that "Scriptures of the Typhlodians" is going to be a Demilich worshiping slog, you're presented with a beautiful Cynic-toned guitar solo. The ethereal chanting found halfway through also adds a subtle bit of character and atmosphere that most bands would have wanked into the ground.

This little bit is emblematic of Le Dernier Crépuscule as a package. Chthe'ilist take a more reserved approach to a lot a facets of their sound. Creepy gurgling may be heard echoing within a song, only for it to disappear and never to be heard again. These little flourishes and details that give the album so much personality and atmosphere are not over done. No, the band avoids the cheese factor. They don't even throw endless guitar wankery in around, instead opting for the handful of truly impressive moments to stand out. The attention to detail and emphasis on really partitioning the most amazing parts are going to be the unsung parts of Le Dernier Crépuscule. Chthe'ilist really prove to be masters of their craft with such a fine tuned sense of song structure.

This then leads to what doesn't work. Where the album stumbles a bit is in its homogeneous structure. Each track is a standout. Great, huh" Well, in a way it leaves a lot to be desired. Le Dernier Crépuscule adheres to a strict formula throughout its run time. Five of the album's seven tracks hover neatly around the seven minute mark, following the script with a bold and eerie opener, pummeling middle section, and closing with a clean guitar climax. There is some change up with this formula, such as the penultimate song having its soloing in the middle rather than the end. For the most part, however, it all progresses about the same.

So again: why is it so hard for me to write Chthe'ilist off completely"

It all comes down to how perfect Le Dernier Crépuscule comes together as a whole. 2015 was an absolutely immense year for death metal. Originality and boundary pushing were met with equally impressive throw backs and retro resurgences. Yet few, if any, bands felt as fully realized as Chthe'ilist. It's what everyone thought Cruciamentum were, or wanted Triumvir Foul to become. The dark griminess works well with the themes. The production is absolutely sublime. Then of course, is the bass, which is so ***ing delicious throughout that it is worth spinning the album ad nauseum. All of these components come together so well, presenting a complete masterwork of modern death metal than Chthe'ilist's peers could only hope to achieve.

It has come to my attention that I was misinformed about the album's lyrical content. There is no Lovecraftian influence here and I have edited the review to accurately reflect that.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
Dizchu
January 17th 2016


264 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Getting strong Demilich vibes from this, sounds absolutely phenomenal.



Great review, thanks for pointing me towards this.

Gwyn.
January 17th 2016


17075 Comments


Everyone is saying this has Demilich influences and it gets me really curious but I've also read that it has clean vocals which I want nowhere in my dm

JohnnyOnTheSpot
Staff Reviewer
January 17th 2016


6363 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

the cleans aren't that prominent tbh, most of it is growled iirc

Gameofmetal
Staff Reviewer
January 17th 2016


10178 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

really need to hear this clearly

EvoHavok
January 17th 2016


7236 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Will check asap.

tempest--
January 17th 2016


20572 Comments


"Cthullu" -> Cthulhu

"you could actually use the word "phantasmagorical" without sounding like an utter cunt."
lmfao, great rev.
downloaded this the other day but haven't listened yet, hopefully will get around to it soon!

Hawks
January 17th 2016


51902 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Can't wait to jam this.

Digging: Swallow the Sun - The Morning Never Came

Dizchu
January 17th 2016


264 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

@Gwyn.



The cleans sound like chanting and mostly just add to the atmosphere. There's no In Flames choruses here.

hal1ax
January 17th 2016


9131 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

This thing shredz

Xenophanes
Staff Reviewer
January 17th 2016


788 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Yeah they're more like chanting than anything else

Digging: Julien Baker - Turn Out The Lights

Archelirion
Contributing Reviewer
January 17th 2016


5446 Comments


Had this on my radar for a while, so I'll definitely check this; should slay. Minty review :]

Gameofmetal
Staff Reviewer
January 17th 2016


10178 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

was the lycus cover and this done by the same guy because they look disturbingly similar up there on the homepage

jesterhead92
January 17th 2016


3462 Comments


Sounds like something I need to hear

elcrawfodor
January 17th 2016


1264 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I've been looking forward to this, is it streaming yet?

ChoccyPhilly
January 17th 2016


11667 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I am so stoked for this and glad you covered it, and well at that. Mental pos

Digging: Thantifaxath - Void Masquerading as Matter

JohnnyOnTheSpot
Staff Reviewer
January 17th 2016


6363 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

@elcrawfodor - nah but they sent out promo copies : ] which inevitably leaked

Ryus
January 17th 2016


15585 Comments


can't wait to hear this

Digging: DJ Richard - Path of Ruin

Gameofmetal
Staff Reviewer
January 17th 2016


10178 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

i found the full album on youtube already

adr
January 17th 2016


11785 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This sounds like Timeghoul. I'm on 3rd track and album rules hard so far

JohnnyOnTheSpot
Staff Reviewer
January 17th 2016


6363 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

ah. dunno if that counts as a legit stream, but fair nuff



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