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Inquisition – Veneration Of Medieval Mysticism And Cosmological Violence

inquisition – veneration of medieval mysticism and cosmological violence


Inquisition has always been a band that was full of exceptionalities and controversy. The international metal press has written relentlessly about the band’s Colombian origins, the alleged neo-Nazi sympathy as depicted regularly in their early career as well as the more recent incident where founding member Dagon was captured with a substantial amount of child pornography in his possession. That came to light in 2018, although the allegations were already made in 2008. Although all this cost them their record deal with Season of Mist and the tour with Satyricon also fell through, the band still seems to have found its way back up to some partners who apparently have a differently set moral compass. In 2022, the band was still able to hit the stage again at Finland’s Steelfest, and Poland’s Agonia Records signed the band and released the excellent ‘Black Mass For A Mass Grave’ in 2020.

That same label also brings forth this ninth Inquisition album that, despite all the peripheral controversies and tastelessness, proves that the band never lost their focus when it comes to their musical course. Ever since their debut album from 1998, Inquisition has been perfecting their ever-so recognizable musical formula. Without a doubt based on the primal sound of the first four Immortal albums, Inquisition kept that core alive throughout their extensive discography while at the same time pushing things into more unique territories, consequently securing their own niche.

Although ‘Black Mass For A Mass Grave’ came as a bit of a surprise after all the turbulent recent history, it brought up an Inquisition we had not heard until then. The Inquisition DNA was clearly kept alive, but the album showcased a more varied and versatile sound, serving us with a bit more atmospheric melodies and details. Those subcutaneous melodies have always been an integral part of the band’s musical legacy throughout the majority of their existence, yet on that 2020 album it was obviously brought up a level.

On ‘Veneration Of Medieval Mysticism And Cosmological Violence’, the new album that was also released by the band’s new home of Agonia Records, the band continues the musical path chosen with its predecessor. In just under 45 minutes we are being served with some of the best Inquisition tracks that the duo has ever written, the classic abyssal contrast between the furious and icy cold, blasting Black Metal with those underlying melodies has been extended and deepened. The melodies have gotten an almost dreamlike character, ever contributing to the colossal, almost schizophrenic disjunction that the music typifies. With minimal effort and means the band is still able to captivate and to amaze, bringing the listener to the edge of their seats with their creative twists and turns. The contradictory nature of the music is also to be found within the unorthodox arrangements that at the same time just stay within those frames of the genre – still taking Immortal’s ‘Diabolical Fullmoon Mysticism’, ‘Pure Holocaust’ and ‘Blizzard Beasts’ as the band’s starting points.

The breathtaking atmospheres, the croaky vocals of Dagon, the ever-rattling drums it is all there, but Dagon’s riffs are still stealing the show. The ingenuity and catchiness is beyond everything that the Black Metal genre has to offer these days; the coldness of the base-riffs, the earworm melodies and even the screaming solos, they all are woven together so expertly. Just like with most of their albums, Inquisition are coming up with titles pretty much summing up their musical content. It is all majestic, magnificent, mythical and cosmological, these words just vibrate through each second of every single song.

Although from Colombian origins, Inquisition can be considered one of the ultimate pinnacles of American Black Metal (USBM), they ever offered something unique while still remaining so close to the very Black Metal cornerstones. Yet, possibly starting from their Season Of Mist-debut ‘Obscure Verses For The Multiverse’ from 2013, the band has grown out of the shadows and can be regarded as an institution that has grown bigger than anyone would ever have though. Despite the somewhat bitter aftertaste that the band has inflicted on itself, ‘Veneration Of Medieval Mysticism And Cosmological Violence’ is yet another grandiose milestone in the history of American Black Metal.

Agonia Records

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