by Sunnyvale STAFF
January 31st, 2024 | 4 replies

Release Date: 02/02/2024 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Hail Cesariana

Cesariana is the third full-length from Brazilian duo Litosth. While the album’s promotional materials suggest a group treading new ground while delving into wide-ranging influences (among them “dark pop”, “classical”, and “doom”), the most striking thing when listening to this is that, while there may be faint hints of those stated influences, the record’s essence is nearly untouched by such concerns. By that, I mean the band feels utterly comfortable residing within the confines of their chosen space: mid-tempo black metal, heavily infused with melody and symphonic elements. In a world which generally prizes distinctiveness and the new and the fresh, I understand why a statement like “this album is the same old melodic black metal formula, but done right” wasn’t the headline pitch, but to be clear, I’m not complaining about what this LP ultimately turned out to be. Cesariana doesn’t feel like an overly ambitious release, but it succeeds with precision in all which it aspires to. In short, the vox combine grittiness with range to deliver a satisfying mixture of growls and shrieks, while the accompanying instrumentation maneuvers with agility to provide grandiose melodies and epic synths without sacrificing the riffage aspect sorely-needed to make this style truly succeed. The album’s eight songs are remarkably consistent - if none of them soar to transcendent heights, they all remain tasteful, well-crafted, and digestible markers of the band’s steady vision (although perhaps opener “In Waves” or mid-album cut “The Argonaut” might be the best sample if you’re on the fence). The fact that the tunes rarely (if ever) really let loose in terms of speed isn’t a major problem, first because there remains a feeling of visceral energy about, and second because the record as a whole doesn’t overstay its welcome (under forty-nine minutes in full). Cesariana is not the type of album to shatter your conception of what’s possible in the world of metal, but it gets the job done with aplomb for devotees of its subgenre. Hey, looks like it’s a good thing that Sputnik now has that “melodic black metal” tag after all.

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user ratings (8)

Comments:Add a Comment 
Staff Reviewer
January 31st 2024


Album Rating: 3.7

Album is out this Friday, Feb 2nd.

Not an earth-shattering record, but I enjoy it, and suspect a good chunk of aficionados of the more melodic/symphonic side of black metal will dig.

Staff Reviewer
February 1st 2024


Have this on my list for tomorrow, sounds like a good time!

February 4th 2024


Gotta hear this.

March 6th 2024


Album Rating: 4.0

Pretty good m/

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