Deathspell Omega
Paracletus


5.0
classic

Review

by Funeralopolis USER (44 Reviews)
November 2nd, 2020 | 187 replies


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A lot of noise signifying nothing.

Paracletus is the third and final LP installment in a series of three albums by Deathspell Omega disparately harrowing on the relationship between man and God. Paracletus meaning in Latin ‘comforter or advocate' is their most defining work, refining elements of their spanned career into a focused effort. As corny as it is, there are few words more succulently culminative than to describe its sound than transcendental. This album is a narrative epic, vocals may be indistinguishable but are merely a vessel for the backdrop to draw its abstract and philosophical nature.

Similarly to Gorguts a la death metal before them, Deathspell Omega are turning black metal on its proverbial inverted cross, churning a sound that is extremely dissonant, challenging and complex. While this album can be absolutely pummeling (such as the extended intro of Devouring Famine), it is also in equal parts evocatively beautiful. The trio opening tracks blend into each other seamlessly Epiklesis/Wings Of Perdition/Abscission starting with a jubilation of guitars, that naturally progress into tom blasts and absolute madness as it is torn raw from the aether. Staying at the same tone, each performance swells concluding in Abscission, sporting one of the wildest drum performances you have probably ever heard. At first the album sounds messy; instruments are in different time signatures – but it all comes together. The drums are free, they dance around the soundscape never feeling like they are holding back from expressing themselves, striking at each opportune moment, as passionately as possible. Freedom works well for the album, as the production is much cleaner and precise than previous efforts, even most licks of the bass are audible and exactly where they need to be placed allowing each instrument to be expressed unbridled. Even though the instruments are all different they have a common narrative and sound that work in convergence towards the telling of something, whatever esoteric tale it is exactly that Deathspell Omega are aiming for.

I have spent months on end delving into Deathspell Omega’s lyrics. Paracletus is primarily inspired by a wide array of historic intellects, biblical stories and most respectfully the French philosopher George Bastille. To give some context to the lyrics, Deathspell Omega are metaphysically Satanists (not theological) – they believe all that there is - is flawed - as it is made by man who is flawed. All that humanity is to ever interpret is always doomed to failure and in shedding our humanity, we can become closer to perfection synonymously death. Humanity is damned by its sins and pre-destined for perdition. The meaning is nihilistic but very interesting juxtaposed next to the glory that is the idea of perfection (the divine). When I listen to their music, I feel inspired, inspired to think deeper – I can’t understand the lyrics, the lyrics are esoteric but if anything, they’re thought provoking and I think that is the point. We as humans can never grasp this world because it is always through a human lens but in mustering what we can we can find beauty. Deathspell Omega are nihilists, perhaps in the most pessimistic of sense but regardless as a stage 4 cancer patient myself, struggling to come to terms with my reality, I can’t help but find there is some beauty in the adventure of finding my own meaning.

Paracletus is an excellent way to end the trilogy. Part I Circumspice bows before the glory of Satan. Part II Fas finds the unmarked, docile apostle descend into unfathomable perdition and come to terms with the insignificance of man. Part III Paracletus, where we are now, is the lesson, it reassures us we are in a cycle of servitude destined for nothing. The message of Deathspell Omega’s nihilism is that of transcendence, the transcendence of our mortal coil and endless cycle – to attain enlightenment we need abscission – to shed humanity.

The album is broken up into 3 parts given the opening interlude, middle and closer. We start with transcendence possibly from hell in Epiklesis I, mourn what we thought was the way of the world in Dearth in a slow burning and powerful dirge that lyrically resets perspective and musically resets volition. Without mercy, we are in the final translation, Apokastasis Panton, which I believe is one of the greatest pieces of music ever conceived. It is the sweltering climax of the trilogy, an instrumental, a final statement piece - both an invitation and an actual visceral experience and showing of the abstractly promised land: nothingness. The closer highlights the unbridled beauty of tremolo black metal, it is sweltering, exhaustive and absolutely stunning. Deathspell Omega has made it clear in interviews that they don't just believe black metal is a genre, it is a philosophy and a way of life they hold in the highest of respects. Black metal is never reserving, never holding back and in some senses the most freedom we can rally in our shackled worlds – the .999 infinite on our way to the unreachable 1.

As of writing this it has now been 10 years since the release of this album. While Deathspell Omega still remain widely esoteric and unknown it is incredible the number of people that have been moved enough to create works in their influence and footsteps since. I firmly believe this trilogy is ahead of its time and we will continue to see the implications of its work for decades to come. Many people have tried to capture its essence but what I think sets Deathspell Omega apart is their clear conviction in presenting a philosophy in sound that keeps the work cohesive and purposeful. Capturing the energy of an idea is a difficult concept and even less often found in black metal.

The official names of Deathspell Omega’s band members have never been released; they have never performed live. The music is a representation of itself in the purest form. Paracletus is not easy to digest, understand or apologetic for it. Deathspell Omega have crafted an exercise in music transcending words – it’s a narrative, and a philosophy personified and obfuscated through sound.



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user ratings (1224)
4.3
superb
other reviews of this album
Kyle Ward EMERITUS (4.5)
The pinnacle of an already established and respected sound, Paracletus is the very best of what Deat...

ThyCrossAwaits (4.5)
A dense, black opus....

Chatterer (5)
*chatter...* (Translation for mortals: Be afraid…)...



Comments:Add a Comment 
Funeralopolis
November 2nd 2020


14586 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I've been wanting to write this for a while. After sitting with it for quite a few years I feel pretty confident in saying Paracletus is my favourite album of all time.

TheAntichrist
November 2nd 2020


4053 Comments


fuck i haven't spun this in a while. what an album!

R6Rider
November 2nd 2020


5282 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I feel like this is Deathspell’s most memorable album.



Either way it’s super good.

Gyromania
November 2nd 2020


36908 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

these guys make some rly friggin cool artwork

Gyromania
November 2nd 2020


36908 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5



Orb
November 2nd 2020


9281 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Sorry to hear youre battling stage 4 my dude. Its something close to home as I'm currently helping build the second largest treatment center in north america. And great review btw, this album truly is a thought provoking masterpiece of timeless proportions.

Gyromania
November 2nd 2020


36908 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Man I should have read the rest of the review. Had no idea you had cancer, let alone stage 4. So sorry to hear.

Funeralopolis
November 2nd 2020


14586 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

@Evok: That's awesome man, I'm at Princess Margaret which may be the largest in North America(?). It's really great to have a dedicated center, making modern testing easier to roll out and more lives saved.



@Gyromania: Yes unfortantely. Been about a year since I got diagnosed with an extremely rare form of stage 4 lung cancer. I'm still fighting, doing actually a lot better the last couple of months than I have been in a long time. I really think Deathspell Omega has helped to get me through a lot of this.

Gyromania
November 2nd 2020


36908 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Damn. I think you and I have had some disputes on here in the past (maybe not tho my memory is kind of shit these days) but I genuinely hope you can beat it. Lung cancer is a fucking bad one but it's not impossible to conquer.



As for this album, I had it rated 3/5 after what I believe was 1 spin. Heard it a while ago and kind of wrote it off but I spun in like 4 times this morning and holy shit this is actually so good. That moment in phosphene from like 1:00-2:10 is incredible. Lots of standouts moments like this I'm noticing the more I play it

MillionDead
November 2nd 2020


5131 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Sweet review man. Stay strong, I'm happy you're feeling better. @Gyro: This was a 5 on my first ever listen. I love the chords. Paracletus is world ending. The perfect combo of beautiful, dissonant, and extreme. Hits that perfect sweet spot for heavy music.

Gyromania
November 2nd 2020


36908 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah in hindsight this is better than furnaces

MillionDead
November 2nd 2020


5131 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Furnaces is a 4.5 for me, but this is even better. Perfect album musically and conceptually. I think about these a lot when I'm making my own stuff.

DarkHorizontal
November 2nd 2020


173 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

This was a really great review man. Super sorry to hear about your condition man. Truly unparalleled album.

Gyromania
November 3rd 2020


36908 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

So what's the deal with these guys anyway? People claim they're neo nazis but I've researched this on google and found nothing but dead ends

twlight
November 3rd 2020


8615 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Their lead singer has apparently been involved in NSBM bands in the past.



However, this individual does not write the lyrics for DO... Only contributes.

twlight
November 3rd 2020


8615 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

DO isn't a "nazi band" this rumor needs to stop



Also, stop throwing that word around

Gyromania
November 3rd 2020


36908 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Assuming you're speaking in general terms there because I don't throw that word around haha.



I just spent the better part of an hour combing through lyrics and interviews with mikko aspa and I'm convinced that the accusations against him and DO are total bullshit. Even the questionably racist shit he's said is far more in line with misanthropy, not racism/fascism. The left is so fking bad at reliably identifying racism/fascism

Shadowmire
November 3rd 2020


6660 Comments


i am the left but i can confirm dso are not a nazi band

Funeralopolis
November 3rd 2020


14586 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

The whole thing is ridiculous. It is clear Mikko doesn't write the lyrics they are most often credited to Hasjarl. The philosopher George Batille is by far the bands biggest influence, they ad verbatim quote him multiple times and lyrically the entire premise of the trilogy is to express Batilles view on nihilism. Batille was blatantly anti fascist.He has said he would never shake hands with an antisemite.



People got up in arms about Furnaces because it depicts the step by step actions an oppressive dictator, the order, would take to put man in servitude. People saw this as an erotic fantasy of Mikko assuming it was written by him. I dont have the exact quote but I have read from deathspell fans that Mikko is a hired session vocalist only. If anything they probably love Mikko is a sexual pervert like Batille. The idea behind using him is his style matches the music and the art comes before anything else. Deathspell wanted to create a piece infused with passion of hatred coming from all sides of the political spectrum so it comes across as vigorous in their music.



Bastille biggest influence of course is Nitzeche. Both hated the idea of identity politics. To say especially Nitezche liked a political party is laughable and counter intuitive to everything he stood for.



The lyrical idea behind Furnaces is to be like okay... well now that we established God is dead, do we put faith in mankind? Theyre like lol nope mankind is just as fucking bad trust nobody.









Gyromania
November 3rd 2020


36908 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah seems like a lot of presumptions and not much to go off of, even in that quote where he says "I don't particularly like gypsies or street niggers over here, but then I don't like average Swedes and finns either" like to me this sounds more misanthropic than racist. He's saying he doesn't particularly like anybody. Everyone is very harshly scrutinized these days and context doesn't seem important for many.



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