One of the first bands that helped to lay the foundations of the French black metal scene in the mid and late nineties is the band Seth. Now making a triumphant return with their sixth album “La Morsure du Christ” out via Season of Mist. The French sextet is comprised of Saint Vincent (vocals), Drakhian (guitars), Pierre Le Pape (keyboards), Heimoth (guitars, keyboards), Alsvid (drums) and Esx Vnr (bass). Their newest masterwork retrieves the nostalgic hallmarks of the melodic flair of debut album “Les blessures de l’âme”, through the flawless rhythmic work of the guitars and the elegant keyboard accompaniment performed in the dramaturgical style of nineties black metal. “La Morsure du Christ” beautifully emphasizes the majestic and the grim vocal performance, the songs are carried in the exuberant form of tremolo picked-riffs. Illustrating a powerful presentation throughout forty-four minutes, the songs burst out in the utmost melodic style of elegant splendor and aggression.
Straight from the opening title track “La Morsure du Christ”, Seth brings back their trademark sound that is portrayed in the soaring melodic guitar bolstered by swift drumming. With the epic majesty of the symphonic crescendo and gothic synth texture, that outshine the blazing riffs, the sextet conjures the forgotten art of the second wave of black metal. The songwriting draws its strength from the scale of powerful riffs offering zealousness and might. Ornate songs such as “Métal Noir” see the heavy guitars unleashed like molten lava, the harmony of the composition captures the spirit of the vehemence.
Sumptuous elements like the acoustic guitars and the cascading synth set an opulent and emotional effect. Seth also mixes in many styles from modern black metal. The songs on “La Morsure du Christ” are textured with fluent melodies and towering lead guitars inspired by the gothic style of black metal. There is just so much elegance and grandeur of epic majesty on songs like for instance “Sacrifice de Sang”. The diverse approach to the songs makes the album inevitably magnificent. In every sense of the shimmering guitar work, each track captures the uniqueness of their music. Whilst the vocals give a theatrical performance that is akin to a grim Vampiric fashion, the pace often shifts from slow to mid-tempo and gives space for the drums to burst into a violent tempo of blast beats. Crashing cymbals and double bass are boasted with an uplifting rhythm, showcasing fancy riffs and vibrant lead guitars. The theatrical background created by the synth has the ability to reshape the flow of the music.
On “La Morsure du Christ” the songs resonate with the thundering tempo and the raspy growls bring the ancient hymns and verses of epic majesty. Among the most memorable tracks that would appeal to fans of (old school) Dimmu Borgir and Cradle of Filth is “Ex-Cathédrale”. The song wades across the atmospheric black metal in its pompous scale of rich orchestration. The powerful drums deliver many fast tempos while the guitars incorporate a full range of tremolo-picked riffs and then in comes the role of dual vocals in providing a passionate chorus. Seth offers many pleasing melodies where the musicians masterfully reveal their skills. The juxtaposition of the acoustic guitar and synth is brought by deep inspiration. “Hymne au vampire (Acte III)” flicks through the animated aggression. One of the aspects that gives the album a magical charm is the elegance of the French language. “Les océans du vide” sheds vibrant melodies carried through a dynamic drum pace where the tempo ranges from slow to blast beats, its somber atmosphere adds an elegant touch.
From its outset “La Morsure du Christ” demonstrates the classic panache and dynamism of the band’s music. Seth brings something epic and sensational on the latest album. The ineffable effect of galloping riffs and flamboyant melodies shows how they romanticize the past. The album closure “Le Triomphe de Lucifer” combines obscure symphonies with a beautiful female chorale voice. Contrasting against the acoustic strings the track offers captivating hooks. Carried by the fast pace of the drums and energetic riffing, the song maintains its epic flow by merging aggression and old-fashioned gimmicks. The latest outing by the French masters is refined and elegantly textured. “La Morsure du Christ” is a modern black metal masterpiece full of mesmerizing and awe-inspiring moments. Recommended for fans of Dimmu Borgir, Cradle of Filth, and Belenos.
Release Date: May 7th, 2021
Label: Season of Mist
- La Morsure du Christ
- Métal Noir
- Sacrifice de sang
- Hymne au vampire (Acte III)
- Les Océans du vide
- Le Triomphe de Lucifer
- Les Océans du vide (instrumental bonus track)
- Sacrifice de sang (instrumental bonus track)