Spire - Temple Of Khronos review




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Band: Spire
Album: Temple Of Khronos
Release date: February 2021


01. Chronometer
02. Hymn I - Tyrant
03. Hymn II - Tormentor
04. Hymn III - Harbinger
05. Interlude - Antithesis
06. Hymn IV - Puissant
07. Hymn V - Khronos


On the day of my birthday last year, Spire announced that they would release Temple Of Khronos, "a swirling vortex of howling madness, chaos, choral hysteria, heavy riffs, and alien soundscapes". While most of the time claims like this one prove unfounded when albums are actually released, in this particular case the band's evaluation of their own music couldn't be more accurate.

'Khronos' means 'time' in Greek and Temple Of Khronos is dealing with the concept of time with the songs featuring all sorts of apparent and subliminal references to it. Musically, the album is a journey into psychedelic and progressive black metal soundscapes, complemented with blackened doom passages and a cosmic atmosphere. It is complex without being overly technical, and it's incredibly re-playable with so many nuances in the album as a whole as well as in each particular song.

While the band's 2016 well-received debut, Entropy, manifested an adoration of Deathspell Omega and sounded more like an Icelandic black metal release than an Aussie one, Temple Of Khronos is an entirely different affair. The dissonant, DSO-like riffing is still present but it is only a part of the whole and it is not even the largest part. Just how Icelandic black metal has now become more melodic, this sophomore album by Spire is also embracing melody just a little bit more. Alongside, we are also treated with the time-warping atmospherics of Almyrkvi, the ritualistic motifs of Urfaust, the psychedelic trips of Blut Aus Nord, the ominous ambience of Lurker Of Chalice, and the doom / black fusion of The Ruins Of Beverast. Don't let the namedropping scare you away though; by taking the best elements of the aforementioned acts, Spire concoct a form of music here that possibly no other band can claim rights to. The album reminds me of Mayhem's Grand Declaration Of War regarding how edgy (and grand) it is, especially in its vocal delivery.

The vocals play the protagonist role here and are the reason why the album displays a largely experimental character. As captivating as the music may be - and the music is absolutely enthralling - the vocals are what make the record truly unique. And there are a lot more vocals on this one compared to its predecessor and they are a hundred times more diverse. Choral chants, shrieks, howls and growls, a dramatic theatricality akin to A Forest Of Stars, and - on top of it all - a Nemtheanga-like timbre and a multi-faceted range that instantly enhances everything it touches.

Composing truly compelling black metal is no mean feat. The genre is full of either dull retreads or ill-conceived and unsuccessfully performed stylistic fusions. Spire are turning black metal on its head, seamlessly integrating influences, and delivering an album that is borderline avant-garde, yet somehow poised and focused in its swirling and its hypnotic aspects alike. Five years is a long time to wait between albums but the significant improvement on every level totally makes up for it.

Physical | Digital

"The missile of time will never cease
The spearhead sallies forth
Dragging reality in its wake
Creating the physical
Fashioning the knowable"


 



Written on 01.04.2021 by Only way to feel the noise is when it's good and loud!


Comments

Comments: 8   Visited by: 52 users
01.04.2021 - 13:33
RaduP
CertifiedHipster
Is there any better painting of the Cronos myth than Goya's?
----
Serenity is no longer wishing you had a different past.

2021 goodies
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01.04.2021 - 13:40
nikarg
Mod
Written by RaduP on 01.04.2021 at 13:33

Is there any better painting of the Cronos myth than Goya's?

I actually didn't know the painting and had to google it. Fierce stuff indeed. Greek mythology is metal as fuck, man, really brutal and sexually deviant.

On another note, it makes me sad that people are not paying a few bucks to read reviews like this one. I am so depressed knowing that only you and a handful of other premium users have access to this.
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01.04.2021 - 14:44
Bad English
Tage Westerlund
Written by nikarg on 01.04.2021 at 13:40

Written by RaduP on 01.04.2021 at 13:33

Is there any better painting of the Cronos myth than Goya's?

. Greek mythology is metal as fuck, man, really brutal and sexually deviant.




Kawir knows it. Seems you greeks had black metal whit Cerberus - Bastard dogs from Hell
Symphonic - Aphrodite and Theogony
Thrash - Aris and Brutal War
Hair - Dionysus and wine drinkers
Speed - Zeus the bird rapist
Death - Hades and dark hole
Heavy - Aion
Doom and all supgenres - Tranus Eureclidios
All those booze, gyros souvaki sexual orgies. What a life they had.
----
Life is to short for LOVE, there is many great things to do online !!!

Stormtroopers of Death - ''Speak English or Die''

I better die, because I never will learn speek english, so I choose dieing
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02.04.2021 - 10:28
Deadsoulman
Ok Lumberjack
Written by RaduP on 01.04.2021 at 13:33

Is there any better painting of the Cronos myth than Goya's?


That room in the Prado museum in Madrid with all of Goya's black paintings, including this one, is freaking scary, especially if you've visited the rest of Goya's religious and colourful stuff before. That's quite a recommended experience.


About the review, this album seems right up my alley, Nik had me at all the namedropping, especially at the mention of A Forest Of Stars. I guess today's playlist just got a bit fuller.
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02.04.2021 - 19:37
nikarg
Mod
Written by Deadsoulman on 02.04.2021 at 10:28

About the review, this album seems right up my alley, Nik had me at all the namedropping, especially at the mention of A Forest Of Stars. I guess today's playlist just got a bit fuller.

Let us know what you think. Personal highlights are "Tormentor" and "Puissant" but the entire album rips.
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03.04.2021 - 01:11
Batlord666

This is incredible, judging from the chosen song on Bandcamp. I did a bit of a double take when the clean vocals come in - The likeness to Alan Averill is astounding!
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03.04.2021 - 01:20
nikarg
Mod
Written by Batlord666 on 03.04.2021 at 01:11

This is incredible, judging from the chosen song on Bandcamp. I did a bit of a double take when the clean vocals come in - The likeness to Alan Averill is astounding!

Glad you like it! What do you mean by "chosen song"?
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03.04.2021 - 19:52
Batlord666

Written by nikarg on 03.04.2021 at 01:20


Glad you like it! What do you mean by "chosen song"?

Sorry, I meant the song that plays on Bandcamp when you click on the play button, I think it was track 6.
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