Cultus Profano – “Accursed Possession”

Cultus Profano – “Accursed Possession” CD / LP / DMP LP / Cassette (Debemur Morti Productions)
Battle Helm Rating

As inspired by the cult of black metal as the classical masters of music, the duo of Cultus Profano are by no means ordinary, each being a talented multi-instrumentalist and one no less the drummer for Sadistic Intent (as well as Imperial Decay, ex-Ashnazg, ex-Blashyrkh, ex-Vesterian, ex-Valefar (live)). With a goal to ‘..compose music that embraces a dark and evil atmosphere..’, yet with a broard vision not to be constrained by any particular style, Cultus Profano take their inspiration from across the world but go right to the roots of black metal in being dark, evil music, along with lyrics ‘.. ranging from occultism, demonology, possessions, rituals and anything…’ that they can connect to. Adopting (as far as I can tell) a unique method of composing by switching instruments between them and with the ultimate goal of doing so live, the LA duo of Strzyga (vocals, guitars) and Advorsus (drums, vocals) were only formed in 2016, but are now onto their sophomore in “Accursed Possession”. Right from the mixing and mastering by Rune of StavMix Studios (Whoredom Rife) to the cover painted by Serbian artist Khaos Diktator (Devourment, Saor), it’s clear from the opening frosty chimes that this album upholds their label’s reputation for ‘.. exceptional black metal over the years..’ and when the magnificence of the 7 minute ‘Towards the Temple of Darkened Fates, Op. 19′ permeates your soul through Advorsus’ frictionless double bass drumming and Strzyga’s demonic femme screams along with her powering guitar, you know that whether blasting or at a less frantic pace, the collaboration between these two is the perfect unison between technicality and terror. Incorporating excellent arrangements, along with melodies and elite black metal hooks and grooves, this stylish music does its work in launching you into the other world that Cultus Profano beckons you unto. Shimmering with metallic splendour on the 8-minute epic of ‘Within A Coven Of Shadows, Op.21’, cue another huge groove propelled by more Frost inspired beats and raw, icy strummings from Strzyga, all perfectly co-ordinated with her varying evil vocal tones ranging from haunting hollows to disgusting drawls and spat out blasphemy – totally sick! Slowing it down to ghostly levels on ‘Tenebris Venit, Op. 23’, Strzyga’s possessed screams contrast her melancholic melodies as the deathly atmosphere creeps upon you through its cold chiming embrace and even as Advorsus subtly increases his beats, his powerful background presence never pierces the deathly veil. Attesting to perfectionist obsession with their music, right down to the ‘Op.’ notation on all the songs reflecting a time reference of when they were composed, Cultus Profano are once again screaming heresy from the abyss through the California sunshine!

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