|#FOR FANS OF: Black Old School|
Formed in 2020, the German Mysteria Mystica Aeterna (what a cool band name), is a duo formed by a couple of quite experienced musicians, Frather Noxathra, who takes the duties for the vocals, strings and keys and Frater Odium Aeternum, who plays the drums. Both have several interesting projects closely tied to the realms of black and death metal, where they demonstrate their unquestionable devotion to extreme metal and talent to explore the different niches of this musical expression. Considering this background, it is not a surprise that only a year after the project’s inception, they released a quite interesting debut entitled 'Into the Kingdom of Shadows'. Both musicians seem to be on a high and only a year later they have forged a new opus that have caught the attention of the always reliable label Iron Bonehead Productions.
'The Temple of Eosphoros' is the name of the beast, and it is an excellent incarnation of how black metal should sound, reaching a perfect equilibrium between rawness, fury and atmosphere. Even though, the album cannot be tagged as atmospheric black metal, the ambience is a very strong and an essential aspect of Mysteria Mystica Aeterna’s musical proposal. The generous use of the keys never overshadows the most metal side of the band’s sound, but it complements and enriches it. Production wise, the work done is excellent, the instruments and vocals can be heard perfectly well, and they are distinguishable, never creating a sound ball where the music can not be appreciated. The guitar sound is really sharp, but clear and this is something I appreciate in this short of bands. The album itself is quite short, which is maybe my only complaint, but on the other hand, this means that it comes to the point with no fillers and forgettable moments. After a short and intriguing dark intro, the album begins with the excellent "The Holy Heaven of Will", where all the core elements of Mysteria Mystica Aeterna appear, rasped vocals accompanied by sharp-edged guitars and sumptuous keys, that create a spellbinding atmosphere. The song gains intensity as it progresses, with some quite fast sections mixed with some mid-tempos, or even slow ones. These ups and downs in the pace are adequately used through the whole album, which makes the songs sound varied and interesting, as it always helps to catch the attention of the listeners. The slowest parts are a highlight because here the atmosphere is particularly hypnotizing. The song "Thou, Whose Mouth is a Flame" combines the same aforementioned elements in a very enjoyable and inspired way. Here again, the keys play a prominent role enhancing the atmospheric side of this composition, as they give a grandiloquent touch to the song. The tempo changes are abrupt and mark a great contrast between the different sections, but they are well-done, and I think, as previously mentioned, this helps to make the songs particularly captivating. The calm and beautiful piano interlude in the second half of the song is probably one of the top moments of the album, it is so effective and beautiful. The song that closes an album is always a key moment as it can leave you with a good or bittersweet taste in your mouth. I can assure you that the band has put some effort to close the album with style, as the long and excellent self-titled track agglutinates all the strong points and characteristics of this opus. The riffing here is top-notch, and it is again excellently combined with the tasteful keys. Once again, the tempo and intensity changes are perfectly executed. This composition has been crafted with dedication and time and the result is just wonderful.
In conclusion, the German duo Mysteria Mystica Aeterna’s sophomore album should be a milestone in their career and the confirmation that this band has a lot to offer. Perfectly balanced black metal with a strong atmosphere, that any fan of the genre should listen to. (Alain González Artola)