Words on contemporary releases. Seeking to offer an honest description of works which manage to exist in their own space and time.
Reviewed: Verset Zero – Ultimum Offerens w/ Orphan Swords, Operant, and Somaticae remixes [Clan Destine Records]
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With Ultimum Offerens Verset Zero presents a multi sensory assault. As the title suggests, the ultimate sacrifice is inspired by ritualistic pagan music or secret societies from the Dark Ages and intended more as a holistic, cinematic experience rather than just an audible entry into Verset Zero’s mind. Each track seems to call upon a different set or scene within a movie, a tremendous thing to achieve. The French producer again derives multiple elements from quite powerful and claustrophobic genres like black metal, dark ambient, and noise. Still he manages to load extra density into Ultimum Offerens. Remixed by great representatives of the current scene, this record is not to be missed.
A2. Sikarius Amoris
A4. Nigrum Venti
B1. Sanguis Atratus
B3. Sikarius Amoris (Orphan Swords remix)
B4. Nigrum Venti (Operant remix)
B5. Renascor (Somaticae remix)
Ritus is the expected, haunting, stomach dropping entrance into the tape. Warped organ sounds echoing, intermingling with grunts and metallic sounds, until the deafening blast mid track unleashing punishing industrial percussion. Sikarius Amoris, earlier used by the choreographer and model Aya Soto in a videoclip, is a harsh industrial dub track, frantically changing pace as the music progresses, reminding us of artists like ANFS (only a bit more metal).
Lacero, a driving, murky, slow basement anthem comes with the aforementioned visual imagining (video soon to be premiered via Cvlt Nation). It’s the needed look into the intended aesthetic by Verset Zero, passionate, sexual, and raw. On the B-side, Sanguis Atratus and Auora introduce some overpowering (dark) ambient and electroacoustic elements setting an uncanny divine landscape. Specifically in Sanguis Atratus this sterile haven slowly crumbles away and unravels what it actually represents by means of the distorted beats.
The remixes by Orphan Swords, OPERANT, and Somaticae all seem to amplify the anger and disgust in the originals. Where Orphan Swords goes for rhythmic noise, a steady pace, and intense, overlapping guitar drones, OPERANT designed a dark dancefloor killer with a refreshing faster EBM-informed pace. Last but definitely not least is the Somaticae remix. One of the favorites from the whole release, interesting sticky sounds, dirty, abhorrent vocals and interesting heartbeat-like pace.