The new Antichrist Imperium album, Every Tongue Shall Praise Satan, took a while to reach my inbox but holy fucking Jesus it was worth the wait. This album is nothing short of intellectual avant garde chaotic magnificence. The art contained in its forty eight minute length is most certainly not for the heavy music elitist or folks ignorant to write off technical brilliance thinking The Antichrist Imperium and their ilk are just smashing styles together. Oh no! Every Tongue Shall Praise Satan is a near masterpiece of incredibly constructed and brought to life genre bending metal magnificence. In short, aside from being a stunning effort of artistic creation as a whole, it is most definitely a multi-emotional schizophrenic beast that will attack your entire intellectual consciousness from every perceivable angle. The Antichrist Imperium are engaging, extreme, uncompromising and beautifully brutal thanks to their ability to draw the listeners in with subtle quiet cathartic interludes and harmonious vocal brilliance courtesy of Sam Loynes of Voices/Shrine fame and the angry Satan conjuring guttural snarls thanks to Sam Bean of The Berzerker/Senseless fame, who, both work cohesively together and compliment one another in some contorted binaural brilliance which appeals to, excites and contorts all of our audio sensory faculties to a joyous metal overload. But also make no mistake about this album readers. It is the songwriting magnificence and malevolence of both Matt Wilcock (Abramelin/Akercocke/ex- The Berzerker (guitars and bass) and David Gray (Voices/Akercocke/The Berzerker/My Dying Bride) (drums) that are the chaotic masterminds and brilliant brains behind the astonishing musical artistry that is the magnificent mechanical workings of The Antichrist Imperium and all you bare witness to. Both having worked together previously in Akercocke/The Berzerker, it is here we as outsiders looking in see and hear the similarities of all four members mentioned aboves past musical contributions and as a whole near perfect union, have formed the beautiful hell dwelling demon The Antichrist Imperium.
Now onto to the songs…As if I could even remotely review and or describe them doing them any justice as to how intellectually awesome they are.
Opening the album is “The Dreadful Hosanna” which perfectly sets the scene in the first forty-five seconds for what the album essentially contains as a whole. Pure black/death Satanic blast beat hellish glory with a hint of seething calm. But in all honesty, there is absolutely no way to review, describe, evaluate or at best sum up this album with any actual clarity due to the expanse and sum of all its many minute parts and intricacies. The albums clarity comes is in its chaos and malevolence. “Death Ritual” kicks in straight up galloping death fucking sludge metal and is probably the least complicated song on the album. A blast beat shred fest courtesy of Gray & Wilcock but here we hear Bean unleash his guttural vocal best and growling as if he was summoning the Monster Lake Troll from Metalocalypse. It doesn’t get much heavier than this!
“Draw Down The Moon” is a cold and discordant sometimes acoustic tune that rises and falls like night crushes day. It is uncompromising and unforgiving and just perfect in its song title description as it is musically. It is my favorite song on the album because of the way the band as a whole seem to extend their hand to the listener with many promises and none of which we know to believe or accept but will be guided willingly with all hope abandoned because no matter the outcomes we trust the end is worth the trip no matter what the path ahead holds.
And beautifully that path leads us to the calming, stunning and sombre song “Liturgy of the Iconoclast – Blood Sacrifice” where Sam Loyne’s haunting voice serenades us and accompanies the perfect majestic slow chords of Wilcock. Halfway through the track gains a slight momentum before we are blissfully brought back down and then pelted to Armageddon as Sam Bean drags us to the depths we couldn’t of imagined at the song’s outset. And this is how Every Tongue Shall Praise Satan continues until its bittersweet end! Near perfectly in all its discordant schizophrenic malevolent Satanic brutality and majesty.
Summing up as best I can Every Tongue Shall Praise Satan is like a choose your own adventure because no matter what path you think you’ve chosen, Wilcock, Gray, Bean and Loyne lead us on a path of wonder and mystery with every song presented for us is a world of wonder and contemplation where the listener must leave their inhibitions at the door and wander into the depths of Every Tongue Shall Praise Satan with the promise that no matter where the path of catharsis or chaos takes us, the end will leave us grateful for having opened up to the journey and awakened what we have discarded as our senses lay dormant.