Released: 13th, Svart Records
Reviewer: Metal-Rules.com UK Team
It’s a pretty safe bet that Scandinavian doom metallers Profetus don’t enjoy summer. Steeped in such monumental misery as their latest album is, it’s all too easy to imagine them as the sort of people who sit indoors, whinging about the heat and hay fever and wondering why nobody’s invited them to a barbecue again. But to be fair to them, if these four tracks are anything to go by they don’t like the rest of the year much either.
Describing itself as “A noble visit to nature's chapels with 4 songs of honest, crushing Doom Metal,” ‘As All Seasons Die’ is a slow, dense and bloody minded dirge through a year of dejected nihilism. You know it’s going to be a bad twelve months when Spring changes its name to ‘The Rebirth Of Sorrow’ and instead of birds singing all you can hear is minor key organ music, but when it plods into the melancholic ‘A Reverie (Midsummer’s Dying),’ things get really downbeat. These guys have hopes even lower than the England football team and for ten agonising minutes, they shuffle and grind through low-register growls and suicidal guitar riffs.
Getting through midsummer doesn’t bring any relief however as ‘Dead Are Our Leaves Of Autumn’ is just as grim. Not even the impressive guitar histrionics can lift this one out of its dispirited splendour, but it’s merely an appetiser compared to ‘The Dire Womb Of Winter.’ At over fifteen minutes in length, Profetus’ final song is an epic trawl through a frozen, desolate wasteland. The drum beats fall even slower, the organ sounds like it’s being played by someone on the verge of death and the guitars are little more than morose feedback serenading the blight of the world.
An impressive trawl through Gaia’s ugly side then, ‘As All Seasons Die’ isn’t the easiest album to listen to and despite only running a bit longer than half an hour, it feels significantly longer. Their vision of the natural world isn’t filled with all things bright and beautiful, but instead is populated with hungry, frightened and wretched little creatures clinging desperately to the last vestiges of survival. No wonder there was no dawn chorus in their tribute to the spring, all the sparrows, starlings and swallows must have killed themselves the previous year.
Review by Tim Bolitho-Jones