Being a great fan of pagan folk black metal, I was always disappointed by the lack of any bands from Hellas that would dare to experiment with our rich traditional music, like countless bands from other countries do. With very few exceptions, like the beginning of Fiendish Nymph, or few influences here and there, there is no band in this genre. So, when I fell upon Aherusia through myspace, I just couldn’t believe my ears! Their two songs sounded more than great, so I searched about them and found they have recorded this album “And the Tides Shall Reveal the Traces”, they have already completed their second full-length “As I Cross The Seas Of My Soul” and will record it on September, while they are now composing their third album!
Aherusia isn’t a new band. They were formed by Voreas Faethon in 1997 and released the EP “Whispers of Moon” in 1999, in very limited copies. After that, the band was put on ice and Voreas Faethon joined the black metal band Panselinos. Aherusia revived many years later with a new full line-up. Most of the band’s members are from Aegean islands and the band had many shows across the Aegean Sea, an area with a strong tradition that has definitely influenced their music. So in 2009 the band more experienced than ever, is ready for the big step. After a first non-satisfying attempt to record “And the Tides Shall Reveal the Traces” the result of their second and final recording is at my hands.
From the first moments of the CD, Aherusia reveal their intentions to establish a sound of their own. For me, this band alone is enough to cover the lack of groups of this genre in our country. The term folk, majestic symphonic black metal is too small to contain them. In my opinion their music is extreme Hellenic traditional music. Cretan lyra, black metal orchestrations and extreme vocals blended in a very tight and solid result. Their songs are really very original and refreshing and the compositions reveal endless hours of hard work. All instruments cooperate with each other perfectly and everything is at the right level. Folk, tribal, Cretan traditional music in its blackest form, so amusing and uplifting! Except for the “folk, pagan” face of the band that dominates their music most of the time, there are also some symphonic extreme metal moments in the album, so brilliant, that could be enough for a full-length album from other bands… Lyrics are in English, with a few exceptions of some Hellenic spoken parts. All vocals are “brutal”, very expressive and passionate and there are no female vox in this one. Guitar lines and synths are really inspired; one idea is better than the other. Of course though, the “highlight” of this album is the excellent use of Cretan lyra. Even though it has a very characteristic sound, it works in favor of the melodies and doesn’t cover everything else. The orchestrations are very rich and it’s not just folk instruments following a black riff, but the music itself is deeply penetrated by this folk tradition and mood.
The production and sound of the band is really amazing and very professional, especially for a debut. That is something expected though, when Sakis Tolis (Rotting Christ) mixed and mastered the album and Christos Antoniou (Septic Flesh) helped in the production. The CD will be released by the Greek label Emotion Art hopefully in October 2009 in a digipak with artwork from Seth Siro Anton (Septic Flesh). For me it’s the best album I’ve heard this year and the best album for a Hellenic band for years!!! You can listen to some of their songs in their myspace and Facebook pages.
Originally published on HeavyMetalCosmos