Imperium Dekadenz create dark, rushing black metal on murky, surging ‘Into Sorrow Evermore’

Photo by Benedikt Walter © Void Revelations

The strange group of metal folk who are weirdly averse to showing any emotion expect anger is a weird lot because having only one way to feel is kind of odd. Also, calm down. We get how metal you are. Now, go back to that death metal dot org site and flex, bro. The rest of us who don’t mind feeling different things can expand upon that and be the target of your really bad jokes.

That all pertains to “Into Sorrow Evermore,” the new record from Imperium Dekadenz, a band my non-metal-listening cousin insists is a beer and not a band, and he’s got a point. I’d CRUSH an Imperium Dekadenz. Instead, we’re talking about the long-running German black metal force that is releasing their seventh album and has done something amazing in that they’re putting forth dark, devastating passages that feel really good to experience. Maybe the band—vocalist/guitarist/keyboardist Horaz, guitarist/bassist/drummer/keyboardist Vespasian—got on board with the idea that the worst of feelings can be expressed in a way that lets you get out your trauma but also maintains an adrenaline level where the pain is transformed into art that lets you process. Whatever it is, this is another killer record from a band that doesn’t fear the darkness.

The title track opens in glorious atmosphere as melodies gush, and the shrieks rain down and increase the caterwauling emotion. Spacious playing gets even bigger as Horaz wails, “Who does not reach for it will fall,” as the pace stampedes, and the power crests and fades. “Truth Under Stars” blasts as the leads rip, shrieks knife, and the playing spirals, making it feel like you’re rocketing through the stars. The spirits race as the melodies get even more infectious, stinging and blazing as Horaz calls, “It’s a world for the true hearts,” as the flooding power rushes out into the night. “Aurora” begins with dripping keys and foggy power, the vocals wrenching as sorrowful playing takes control of your mind. Emotion floods as the keys become a bigger factor, the passion builds, and a rumbling pathway leads to your brain being locked in your dreams. “Elysian Fields” arrives with gushing madness and creaky speaking, the playing jarring and electrifying as the vocals wrench. A massive deluge threatens to pull you under as the atmosphere increases while Horaz calls, “I can’t see you nor even feel, because now I know you were never real.”

“Forests in Gale” lets guitars hang over like a storm cloud before the whole thing tears open, a great force unleashed into the world. “A last light dies, the sky summons the storm,” Horaz howls as the playing surges into the stratosphere, crunchy power landing blows. Things pull back some before lighting up again, blasting into dreams and jarring you awake. “Awakened Beyond Dreams” is murky and trudging but also dynamic and exciting, storming into the open. “Walk through the flames, whose power awe holds,” Horaz belts as clean guitars drip through the shadows, icy speaking making your flesh crawl. Blood rushes as the catchy energy become insurmountable, rupturing and blasting into the ground. “November Monument” brings thunderstorming and massive shrieks, the playing pulling your heart in different directions, the guitars flooding your chest. The bass slithers through mystical lands, darkness increases its grip, and the track fades into a bed of clean guitars. Closer “Memories … A Raging River” blasts in and brings black melodies, intense shrieks, and a freezing energy that envelopes you. “Lost years, when storms carry the rain, washed away, irretrievable,” Horaz levels as your heart and mind race, blazing into heavy shadows. Hazy guitars glaze, the clouds gets blacker and thicker, and quiet strains blend with the horizon and fade away.

Imperium Dekadenz maintain a stranglehold on gloomy, emotional black metal that makes you feel deep within your chest and in the most vulnerable parts of your mind on “Into Sorrow Evermore.” It’s a fitting title considering the journey that accompanies this record, though the music can lift you into the stars and help you rocket away because everything is so damn infectious. This is black metal perfect for any environment or time of day as long as you’re willing to pay the mental price that comes with these eight gargantuan servings.

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