Empyrean Throne is a new blackened death metal band from Southern California, USA. They were formed in the summer of 2011 by Andrew Knudsen (vocals) and John Ashbaugh (bass) during a journey to the Scandinavian Peninsula. More band members joined them soon and they started their live activity in 2012. With their complete 6-piece line-up they recorded their debut EP “Demonseed” and released it in the end of 2013 via Erthe & Axen Records.
The band’s sound is closer to the death metal aesthetic, but it definitely has black metal elements too. They have a very powerful guitar-based sound, somewhere between melodic black death and technical death metal. “Demonseed” includes 6 songs, lasting for a little less than 25 minutes and it has a surprisingly good and very professional production for a debut self-released work! Empyrean Throne have also a cello player in their ranks, Kakophonix, whose strings, together with a few background synths, add an interesting symphonic twist in their orchestrations. Of course guitars, drums and Andrew’s brutal screaming vocals are clearly dominating their sound. Some parts of their music have a more technical and aggressive mood, others a more melodic black metal influenced sound, but generally ”Demonseed” is a rather solid album. There are not significant style changes between the songs, which all have a very dark, epic bombastic atmosphere. My favorite song is the closing track “Follow the Plaguelord“, the most melodic and symphonic black metal influenced composition of the album, with the wonderful performance by guest pianist Daniel Pappas. “Demonseed” is a concept EP, and its lyrics are about the rise of a demon-like creature and the impact it has to our world.
Fans of blackened death metal are strongly advised to keep an eye (and ear) on Empyrean Throne. This new American band has released a very good debut EP, merging all different musical backgrounds of its members into a very tight and well-produced work, with a killer sound! “Demonseed” is available in the band’s official Bandcamp page and it is also released in CD edition via Erthe & Axen Records. It comes with a 6 page folded booklet, including the lyrics, while the beautiful cover artwork, which expands in 3 pages, is by Eko Pratama. I am expecting great things from them in the future! Follow the links below to listen to this great EP.