In The Company Of Serpents - Ain​-​Soph Aur review

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Band: In The Company Of Serpents
Album: Ain​-​Soph Aur
Release date: March 2017

01. Middle Pillar
02. Nothingness
03. Crucible
04. Merkabah
05. Limitless Nothingness
06. Limitless Light

In The Company Of Serpents sound as though they have been listening to a lot of very early rock'n'roll and blues in addition to the requisite sludge and doom staples. The guitars alternate between the most distorted of stone-tones and a jangly brightness that, combined with the gargantuan groove, uncluttered progression, and ultimate indebtedness of sludge to blues (by way of doom), had me convinced I was listening to somebody feeding Link Wray through a wood chipper at first. The hoarse whispers that signal the onset of human interference and swampy howls that follow mirror the croaky, smoky warbling of an elderly, decrepit blues singer. "Nothingness" bridges the gap between "Middle Pillar" and "Crucible" with such thin, desolate, ghastly picking that it sounds like a combination of Deliverance and the swamp levels of Left 4 Dead 2.

In The Company Of Serpents is billed and evidently received as a fairly typical sludge/doom band, but in stripping down to a raw, scratchy doom skeleton, the duo has overshot the origins of the genre and managed to combine elements of more traditional American music forms. Ain-Soph Aur's heavy hitters ("Middle Pillar," "Crucible," and "Limitless Light") deliver on the promise of thick, retching, fuzz-saturated sludge metal with a slouching, stubbly grace that should make In The Company Of Serpents the envy of everyone in the scene, but those distinctly non-metal solos and ghost-town atmospheres conjure up the Old West and the Deep South with an immediacy not often so tangible in sludge and rarely pursued in doom.

The Kabbalistic concepts apparently explored within these tracks are beyond me, but I know an expert use of dynamics in songwriting when I hear it, and In The Company Of Serpents ebbs and flows like the tide through these six songs. The three acoustic tracks balance the plodding, atonal odysseys without obviously departing from the heady, gloomy atmosphere, and the metal tracks don't surrender the eeriness of their counterparts amidst the pyroclastic flow of distortion. Maybe I'm reading far too much into what could just be a run-of-the-mill, if pretty strong, sludgy doom album. Well, maybe drinking beer and watching anime at 1am on a weeknight isn't the most productive use of my time, but I'm definitely doing that anyway. I hear some things on Ain-Soph Aur that resonate with my memory as well as my gut, and those peculiar elements make the album all the more unique and creditable in my eyes.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 9
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Production: 8


Written on 23.03.2017 by I'm the reviewer, and that means my opinion is correct.


Comments: 2   Visited by: 102 users
23.03.2017 - 15:07
"swamp levels of Left 4 Dead 2"
Hahaha cool and oddly accurate reference!
28.03.2017 - 22:03
Bad English
Interestimg I like American music forms, its more blues, rock n roll, southern shit where are roots in Delta somewhere, now I want try this band out.
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