Aseitas hail from the wilds of Portland, Oregon and while many bands from that region tend to dabble in the blackened side of the extreme metal spectrum, this group aim to create sonic dissonance via the technical aspects of death metal. Their second full-length, False Peace, is a demanding listen, not least because of three long-form tracks (all over ten minutes) that require closer attention in order to truly grasp the features of the songs. Atonal riffs, heady screams, avant-garde guitars and a disturbing atmosphere could all coalesce into chaotic noise, yet Aseitas’s tight control never allows the songs to tumble fully into the abyss and while “Spite/Sermon” tops out at fourteen minutes, the song is interesting throughout and moments of peace are allowed to shine through the darkness. Of course, as promised, that peace is not real and cannot last and so the song soon negates the serenity and pushes through the light, trailing shadows in its wake and creating a sense a death.
Where False Peace is aggressive, it also finds moments to breath and take respite from the turmoil and does so through the shimmering elements of “Crucible” and the gorgeous post-rock cascades of the introduction of “Blood Into Oil,” allowing the band to reflect on the horrors they have created and give space for more delicate emotions. The song is gentle in its progression to more violent territory but the build-up feels necessary as it brings the ferocious nature of the band clearly into focus – Aseitas use silence only to give themselves more power, more dynamism and “Blood Into Oil” is never a more perfect example of a band exercising control over their sound.
“The Value in Degradation” veers into entirely new areas as its unusual electronic pulses echo into the night, the song descending further into bizarre noises almost as though they are the distant cries of an alien lifeform, calling across the galaxy – perhaps for war as there is nothing peaceful about this communication. “Behemoth’s Dance” edges out the curious progressions and instead aims its course directly into the savage death metal arena that Aseitas are more at home in. The track is another monumental structure, sixteen minutes of hard-hitting and brutal death metal, that is rendered through snarls, off-kilter rhythms and intoxicating guitars. Aseitas take False Peace to the limit and surpass it with ease.
7.5 / 10
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