In the promotional e-mail I received for Obsequiae's debut album, the band was described as "the birth of castle metal". Despite my initial assumption that these guys were yet another cheesy-as-hell symphonic power metal act writing lyrics about dragons and elves, this description actually turned out to be very true. Obsequiae plays black metal with extensive use of medieval classical influences and acoustic interludes - something like this strikes me as "castle metal" far more than power metal with tons of modern gimmicks. Suspended in the Brume of Eos is a chilling album filled with dark atmospheres and haunting compositions, and their unique approach to black metal is one that I find extremely impressive. Obsequiae haven't created a flawless debut here, but it's a remarkable start for this talented young band.
Suspended in the Brume of Eos is a tough album to pin down. Although it does often create a hostile black metal atmosphere, the compositions are obviously very influenced by medieval music, and the folk interludes set the album even further away from your standard black metal effort. I guess "castle metal" may damn well be the best way to describe this album. Most of the songs are very interesting, and tracks like "Altars of Moss" and "The Starlit Shore" are truly beautiful works of art. Unfortunately, a feeling of monotony tends to settle in eventually due to the lack of variation within the arrangements and compositions. Aside from the acoustic interludes, the instrumentation is pretty standard (guitar, bass, drums, harsh vocals), and the "samey" compositions tend to blend together towards the end of the album. The production also sounds a bit too unpolished to these ears, even if it doesn't serve as a detriment to the music. A slightly more professional production would've done Suspended in the Brume of Eos wonders.
With this debut album, Obsequiae have proven that they are a worthy addition into the metal world. They sport a unique sound and plenty of chops to support it, so it should only be a matter of time until this American duo really starts making waves. A slightly more varied instrumental palette will be key to Obsequiae's success in the coming years, but Suspended in the Brume of Eos is still a stunning debut outing worth 3.5 stars. People who enjoy black metal and folk should definitely check this one out.
1. Altars of Moss
3. In the White Fields
4. Suspended in the Brume of Eos
5. Wildes Heer
6. The Wounded Fox
8. Estas Redit
10. The Starlit Shore
12. Cabin Lights