We’ve been eagerly awaiting the third album from the titanic blackened death metal entity known as A Hill To Die Upon, and now it’s nearly upon us. Entitled Holy Despair, it’s scheduled for release on April 22 via Bombworks Records. The album follows 2011’s Omens, which Andy Synn praised in this review on our site, and an excellent 2013 single called manden med leen (reviewed here). We’ve had the chance to hear the new album in advance of its release, and it’s really, really good. Today, we’ll give you evidence of its strength by premiering an official lyric video for the song “Satan Speaks”.
As the lyrical text for the song, AHTDU used a poem of the same name by noted British essayist and novelist C.S. Lewis. It appears in a collection of poems named Spirits In Bondage that Lewis wrote as a young man after returning from the horrors of World War I. As Lewis wrote to a friend in 1918, the book is “mainly strung around the idea that I mentioned to you before – that nature is wholly diabolical &
malevolent and that God, if he exists, is outside of and in opposition to the cosmic arrangements.”
As one writer described the bleak message of the poem, “Death, not life, is the victor. The spider catches the fly, creation returns all its creatures to the dust from where they came, even the sun will in the end be ‘consumed’ by maximum entropy.” To the end of Lewis’ poem, AHDTU added their own final couplet: “I am Satan, accuser accursed / Heed not my words, I was not first.”
The music that the band have created around the lines of “Satan Speaks” is bleak and ravaging, crushingly powerful and seductively melodic, both ferocious and shrouded in a mantle of unstoppable doom. Watch and listen below. We will have a review of the full album soon.