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domenica 15 dicembre 2013

Centuries - Taedium Vitae

#FOR FANS OF: Black Hardcore
Opening with a slow, atmospheric fade, “Incipit Tragoedia” (First Tragedy), segues into the second track, “Caeruleus” (Water Spirits). Segues are prevalent between most of the songs on this release. Centuries is an extreme metal band with black metal vocals using slower beats—as opposed to standard blast beat fare — and includes some solid headbanging grooves, such as in “Gelu” (Chill of Death) and “Metus” (Object of Dread) — channeling a touch of Pantera feeling in these rhythms. The disc title, which I first interpreted as 'Tired of Life', is more accurately translated as 'Weary of Life'. They are a Florida (USA) band that has added a degree of mystery to their image by choosing Latin titles for all of their songs on this disc, as well as the disc title itself. This makes me wonder if one of the band members is a former seminary student (since they don’t teach Latin anywhere else these days, to my knowledge), or if they just used the ‘Net to translate their song titles for dramatic effect. That having been said, there are additional shades of meaning that may come from alternate translations of the song titles than the ones chosen to appear in this review. This reviewer has barely begun to develop an ear for understanding the guttural percussive effect of death metal vocals, and has yet to develop an ear for deciphering the words rendered in the full-throated screams of the black metal vocal style. “Tabeo” (Decay) is extreme noise-metal with a drumbeat, including a clean narrative vocal in the background in English. All in all, I found 'Taedium Vitae' (although somewhat inscrutable) best described as a cross between Anaal Nathrakh and Dissection, as it should appeal to fans of both groups. Be forewarned, however not to expect the smooth, tight rhythms tones of the latter, as Centuries’ rhythm guitars on this disc are overdriven yet jangling, with the accidental dissonance of occasional open strings retained on the recording for effect (as pioneered roughly a half-century ago on the Beatles’ neo-metal tune, “Helter Skelter” which appeared on their infamous 'White Album'). (Bob Szekely)

(Southern Lord - 2013)
Score: 60