Album Review – Vacivus / Rite of Ascension EP (2015)

Fill the void you feel within with the Blackened Death Metal crafted by this devilish British horde.


Vacivus - Rite of Ascension - coverDealing with the occult, death and transcendence, here comes British Blackened Death Metal band Vacivus and their debut EP entitled Rite of Ascension, an album that has enough power to darken your mind and spirit despite being relatively short. If you are already aware of how impactful both the music and the message generated by other Blackened Death Metal bands in the world such as the iconic Behemoth, Belphegor and Goatwhore are, you might have a pretty good idea of what Vacivus have to offer. If not, you better get ready because things are about to get heavy and atrocious.

However, this promising horde is not emerging from the depths of the UK depending strictly upon the heaviness of their music, but they also rely on their undeniable capability to add feeling and intricacy to a vortex of wickedness, showing beyond doubt their skills as musicians. On a side note, Vacivus seem to be extremely attentive to all details involving their music, as for example what they did with the already sold-out special cassette edition of the EP, releasing it on a special “Noir Void Shell” and inked with the “blood of their enemies”. In other words, they’re another good example of how the fusion of hard work and talent always results in awesomeness.

When you start listening to the opening track, Dark Apotheosis, you’ll feel like you’re descending into the fires of hell, where a dark void of despair is forged through the demonic vocals by Nick Craggs and the sinister guitar lines by Dan Rochester and Ross Oliver. Although this song is primarily raw Death Metal, you can taste the venom brought forth by its Black Metal elements. In the title-track, Rite of Ascension, it’s time for drummer Ian Finley to guide the rhythm with his raw blast beats, helping the musicality flow from faster and harsher moments to primeval Blackened Doom. I don’t know if anyone will agree with me, but the “filthy” production of the EP ends up enhancing the obscurity of their music, and therefore the overall quality of the album.

VacivusAgeless, Nameless starts in a more melodic way before evil dominates the sounding again, with the suffocating growls by Nick reaching a whole new demonic level. It’s dense and ominous, with highlights to the way its last part morphs into melancholic and infernal Doom Metal. And there’s no sign of hope when Hostis Rei (which probably means “the accused enemies” or something similar to that in English) begins, sounding like this song was literally crafted in hell. The whole band keeps delivering darkness and evil in the form of heavy and constant guitar lines as well as reverberating bass lines, turning it into my favorite of all five tracks. And lastly, we have one more solid display of malignancy in Vacivus Aeternum, which are the Latin words for “eternally void” and also the name of the band if you haven’t noticed yet. A lot closer to Black Metal than the other tracks, its nice guitar solo works as a downward spiral back to the original den where the EP started in a somber and effective way.

As aforementioned, the special cassette version of the album (strictly limited to 100 copies) released through Goatprayer Records is already sold out, but you can still purchase a digital copy of Rite of Ascension at the Gotaprayer Records BandCamp page, or wait until later this year to grab your CD version of the album via Hellthrasher Productions. Vacivus can easily help you fill the void you feel within with their Blackened Death Metal, all you have to do is embrace their nocturnal and unearthly aria and let their poisonous and metallic words intoxicate your psyche.

Best moments of the album: Hostis Rei.

Worst moments of the album: None.

Released in 2015 Goatprayer Records/Hellthrasher Productions

Track listing
1. Dark Apotheosis 3:51
2. Rite of Ascension 3:57
3. Ageless, Nameless 5:24
4. Hostis Rei 4:37
5. Vacivus Aeternum 5:31

Band members
Nick Craggs – vocals
Dan Rochester – guitars
Ross Oliver – guitars
Dan Jones – bass
Ian Finley – drums

1 thought on “Album Review – Vacivus / Rite of Ascension EP (2015)

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