Deathspell Omega – The Long Defeat

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French black metal avant-gardist Deathspell Omega has exhibited its unrivaled trademarks proving to be the most innovative and original band ever. Since their groundbreaking 2010 album “Paracletus” the trio had reinvented their work through a series of creative approaches to black metal. Each innovative far-flung studio albums like "Si Monvmentvm Reqvires", "Circvmspice", and "Fas-Ite, Maledicti, In Ignem Aeternum" intertwined with complex guitar textures, superb technique, and dissonance. The meticulous architecture of the sonic creation has now reached its peak in the band’s eighth opus “The Long Defeat”.

The five new tracks are almost entirely different yet in a highly creative manner Deathspell Omega defines an unorthodox implementation of the instruments. The guitars embody all elements of high technicality as well as the thick density of the gorgeous textures. In terms of music, the opening track “Enantiodromia” is really difficult to digest its contents, the dramatic intro of the vocals suggests a change of tone yet there is still a sense of purity that leaves enough space for the drums to shape the song. The extravagant display of the guitars is lavish but it further showcases the complex composition that thrives to build solid pacing. Deathspell Omega always finds ways to immerse the listener in the vast sonic sphere of multiple textures and the perfect blend of the mind-blowing atmosphere gives it an engaging feel. The full force of the dissonant crescendo has many unexpected twists and so is the tempo always changing, the sound of the drumbeats and the guitar harmony is extremely complex. Broadening rhythm through a creative tonal framework is strengthened by rapid-fire percussion like some sort of hallucinogenic tapestry that exudes hypnotic effects. The intricate patterns of the drums and the guitars are brought to absolute harmonization. On “Eadem, Sed Aliter” there is a vehemence in the rage full tone of the vocals and the gradual build-up offers a full palette of ambient soundscapes, melodies, and other elements of post-metal and progressive rock are shrewdly fused.

Aesthetically “The Long Defeat” opens a new chapter in Deathspell Omega’s creative oeuvres, the jagged guitars, and groovy bass pulsating throughout the tempo, in fact, the extra dimension of the guitars creates dark visuals setting up a blistering pace for the drums. The lead guitars maintain a constant hook with harsh vocals spewing violent anthems of profanity and the guitars produce polyphonic swirls. Within this intricate composition of rhythm and dark textures, there is always a space for the bass guitar which contrasts with the otherworldly chorale on “The Long Defeat”. Eerie dimensions create a sense of sublime sonic enchantment the pacing of the track is seamlessly more dynamic each guitar note melds into harsh vocals hence giving the song a transcendental quality! Dark soundscapes flow endlessly with the menacing vocals, the bass guitar is intact adding extra dimension to the sudden blast beats. There are multiple reasons why the 8th opus stands out, first is that the atmospheric charged guitars are unreal which brings the ineffable implementation of the lead guitars into work. The drums provide excellent filling, hence Deathspell Omega provides sophisticated instrumentation that initially captures the mood. Another significant aspect of the album is the lucidity of the technical manifestation regardless of the harsh drum beats and the omnipresent backdrop created by the guitars you can hear every instrument with full clarity.

Sie sind gerichtet!” displays the familiar trademark of the band and begins with a massive outburst of the drums that sends its loud blistering reverb and the dense riffing is calculated by the unnerving tempo changes. The vocals inject poisonous venom, one can hear the resemblance to Funeral Mist that seems to conjoin the modern aesthetics of Deathspell Omega with the unorthodox style of black metal. “The Long Defeat” embosses various methods which signify a proper modification of sound that has been cultivated from the past albums. The well-crafted modernism of the avant-garde black metal manifests progressive elements that are brought to the fore. The five songs are quite unsettling in their own eerie nature and embellished with progressive guitar take-offs. While sounding all aggressive, the final track “Our Life is Your Death” veers into progressive rock with the guitars revealing the strange blend of Voivod style while the overwhelming faculty of the dissonance emphasizes on the mid-tempo pacing of the drums. The fluent offshoot of the guitars and melodies backed by the vocals of Mikko Aspa reveal the surrounding details, while the alteration of the pace brings plenty of groove and black’n’roll in a modern style.


  • Music / Songwriting 8/10
  • Vocals / Lyrics 7/10
  • Mix / Production 9/10
  • Artwork & Packaging 8/10
  • Originality 9/10

In my opinion “The Long Defeat” isn’t the best album by Deathspell Omega but the unparalleled work of art executed by these Frenchmen have presented some of their most sophisticated and accurate piece of music in the sub-genre of avant-garde black metal music. This comes highly recommended for fans of Mgła, Funeral Mist, and Misþyrming.

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