Imperial Triumphant
Spirit of Ecstasy


4.7
superb

Review

by Dewinged STAFF
July 22nd, 2022 | 482 replies


Release Date: 07/22/2022 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Remember that scene in Game of Thrones...

... where Vyseris gets his long-desired gold crown in the shape of liquid boiling gold melting his cranium until only a small mound of shiny ashes remain on the floor? Lovely scene. Imperial Triumphant, being the most opulent band from the most decadent city would offer you no less than the same kind of treatment: face melting metal, and that is exactly how Spirit of Ecstasy, their fifth endeavor, has turned out.

The New Yorkers' latest album is an absolute bacchanal for the senses. You would think you're experiencing the epicurean pleasures of avant-garde death metal while your mind is instead corroding to the sound of a voracious riff perforating your mind with tales of debauchery and orgies for the sybarite. Spirit of Ecstasy is no longer the work of a band, but of a collective of musicians and artists that work together as a hive mind, producing extravagant passages of industrial noir and musical gluttony only apt for the fearless.

Kenny Grohowski's voluptuous drumming opens the album with some impossible triplets, soon masked by the dissonant perversion of Zachary Ezrin's guitar chord progressions and Steve Blanco's acrobatic bass lines, and in just a few minutes, this gentle carnival just turns into a very elegant butchery. Colin Marston and Trey Spruance's sonic design for the album is terrific. A mix of brutality and nightmarish erotic that sounds like a pissed off John Zorn orchestrating the zombie version of a philharmonic orchestra. The transitions between the metal parts to the jazzy ones feel like color painting dissolving into clear water, and while the band plays extremes in tracks like the virtuous instrumental “In the Pleasure of Their Company” or the crushing punishment of “Bezumnaya”, most of Spirit of Ecstasy relishes in perfect balance.

Spirit of Ecstasy continues the path laid by Alphaville and Vile Luxury and expands on the band's ambitious schemes. The number of features on this record is ridiculous. From Bloody Panda's Yoshiko Ohara screaming her chest out to The Mantle's Max Gorelic shredding guitar solos like spikes cutting through bloody flesh. The star feature, and I lack the words for a proper introduction here, is actually that of his father: legendary sax master Kenny G, yes, you read that right. The man battles the nightmarish darkness of single "Merkurius Gilded" with a bewildering sax performance worthy of his name. In addition, the party is joined by metal luminaries like Testament's Alex Skolnick and Voivod's Denis Bélanger on songs like the album's spectacular closer "Maximalist Scream". On the other hand, songs like "Metrovertigo" and "Death on a Highway" are among the darkest and heaviest the golden mask triumvirate has ever produced, eccentrically technical and mercilessly sharp.


With this fifth release, Imperial Triumphant have perfected the infusion of their claustrophobic nature, marrying the most aggressive parts with the outlandish theatrical jazz that remains their foundation with surgical precision. Spirit of Ecstasy will satiate your hunger for new material, stuffing your head with as many riffs, growls, rhythm patterns and undecipherable ambience magic tricks as my wife packing her entire wardrobe in her luggage for a two-day holiday in mid-August. Songs like "Tower of Glory, City of Shame" or the formerly cited "Merkurius Gilded" have quickly become Imperial Triumphant's favorites in my own book, a macabre soundtrack to the dystopian reality we are living these days and my preferred and most precious form of mental masochism in the dead of night. May this be our little secret though, my wife really need those holidays.



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user ratings (162)
4
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Dewinged
Staff Reviewer
July 22nd 2022


28577 Comments

Album Rating: 4.7

Merkurius Gilded: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ywcshfrpO3A&ab_channel=CenturyMediaRecords



I'm rusty after a 2 month writer block/busy real life so be kind, people, please, and more importantly, JAM THIS BOI.

Demon of the Fall
July 22nd 2022


25460 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

HYPE!



I will read this and salivate for now, as I can't listen till later

CugnoBrasso
July 22nd 2022


1336 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Lunch can wait, jamming this bad boi right now!

Lichtbringer
July 22nd 2022


776 Comments


Kenny G is whose father?

Dewinged
Staff Reviewer
July 22nd 2022


28577 Comments

Album Rating: 4.7

Max G, plays guitar on the record.



I think.

TheNotrap
Staff Reviewer
July 22nd 2022


17872 Comments


Sounds really promising. When I'm done with my Wake loop I'll jump right into this.

Dewinged
Staff Reviewer
July 22nd 2022


28577 Comments

Album Rating: 4.7

I am finally free of the Imperial Triumphant loop so now i can finally jam the new Wake haha

TheNotrap
Staff Reviewer
July 22nd 2022


17872 Comments


hahah great week, isn't it?

Demon of the Fall
July 22nd 2022


25460 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

'The man battles the nightmarish darkness of single "Merkurius Gilded" with a bewildering sax performance worth of his name.'



spotted a typo, should be 'worthy'



Otherwise interesting review, I feel like you summoned the spirit of Jaq for that second paragraph in particular - doesn't read like your usual reviews (not necessarily a critique). Lavish fanciful vocab was used... I guess that fits the themes associated with IT and was wholly intentional.



Sounds like another awesome album from these guys.

Dewinged
Staff Reviewer
July 22nd 2022


28577 Comments

Album Rating: 4.7

Jaq is a master of the craft and I am just but a clown but thanks Demon.



Thanks for spotting that, I rushed the edits so there might be more, so be sure to let me know if u find anything else.

Dewinged
Staff Reviewer
July 22nd 2022


28577 Comments

Album Rating: 4.7

Thst moment of sax and vocals riding a blast beat at 3:00 of "Tower of Glory..." oh God...

BillyBrill
July 22nd 2022


62 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Dude great review, review plus rating convinced me to listen to this album even though I’m only recently dipping my toes into metal THIS heavy. But yeah mental pos good review

Mort.
July 22nd 2022


19641 Comments


'bacchanal'

huh. never seen it written this way. interesting


very good review

Dewinged
Staff Reviewer
July 22nd 2022


28577 Comments

Album Rating: 4.7

Thanks Mort, Billy, hope u enjoy the album!

Demon of the Fall
July 22nd 2022


25460 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I learnt a new word, managed to decipher what it might have meant but yes I didn't realise the word 'Bacchanal' itself was actually a thing, lol



Sput is educational occasionally, cheers Dew

MarsKid
Contributing Reviewer
July 22nd 2022


15298 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I cannot wait to dive into this.

DaveTrane
July 22nd 2022


552 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

the staff 4.7

review is very nice

gonna jam this later today

Sunnyvale
Staff Reviewer
July 22nd 2022


4072 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

Fantastic review Dewi!

JohnnyoftheWell
Staff Reviewer
July 22nd 2022


49294 Comments


o boi

Sowing
Moderator
July 22nd 2022


41803 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Will have to hear this



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