Deus Otiosus is Latin for “idle god”. It’s a phrase that refers to a theological concept of a god who created the world, set it in motion, and then checked out, leaving things to unfold as they have, which is a convenient explanation for both the ugliness that human beings have persisted in inflicting on each other and nature’s periodic outbursts of destruction. Deus Otiosus is also the name of a pulverizing Danish death metal band we spotlighted in a MISCELLANY post last August.
Eternity, of course, is another big concept, one that’s especially hard for us mere mortals to wrap our minds around, bound as we are by time and a strict (if unknown) sell-by date. Of course, the concept of eternity requires no religious belief, and it’s no more provable. Eternity is also the name of a German black metal band who’ve been kicking around since 1994, which may not be as long as eternity but is still longer than some of our readers have been alive.
Today I discovered new music from both bands, and it seemed fitting to package them together in this post, though appreciating their music requires neither a leap of faith nor solving the great mystery of the universe.
This band (whose Facebook page is here) have a second album on the way later this year called Godless, which is another concept for explaining why shit happens. The very nice album cover is taken from an engraving by Gustave Doré. Today the band started streaming a song from that album called “Pest Grave”, which is about the black plague. It’s a blast of death metal mixed with blackened thrash and energized with fire-breathing guitar fury, and it includes a grim melodic breakdown. The abyss-deep vocals are vividly voracious, too. I liked it. Listen right after the jump — and bring on Godless!
UPDATE: Today (July 16), Deus Otiosus announced that they have signed with Deepsend Records for the release of their new album. Congrats dudes.
Eternity (whose Facebook is here) released demo’s in ’95 and ’96, and then a hiatus followed before the band returned with a series of splits beginning in 2001, with a first album in 2004 and a second one in 2007. Not long ago the World Terror Committee label released Eternity’s third album, Pestiferous Hymns – Rev. I-I-XXXIII. So, you can see that these shared references to pestilence were another reason why I chose to combine the new music of these two bands today.
By the way, the album’s title seems to be a reference to Book Two of Revelations, verse twenty-three (“And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.”) The very nice album cover is by Saint John at Ink Shadows.
The song I heard today is called “Down To the Southern Abyss”. It’s a mid-paced deluge of swarming guitar melodies, emphatic bass chords, and rolling double kicks + snare blasts. Yes, the classic, rancid Nordic-style BM vocals are in the mix, too, passionately proclaiming . . . something.
It breaks no molds, but I really like everything about this song, a fine example of second-wave black metal’s ability to combine memorable melodies with scathing aggressiveness, and with production standards that let you hear everything clearly. Check it out:
“Down To the Southern Abyss”[audio:https://www.nocleansinging.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/01-Eternity-Down-To-The-Southern-Abyss.mp3|titles=Eternity – Down To The Southern Abyss]