The music on Obsequiae’s debut album Suspended in the Brume of Eos was a magical spanning of widely separated musical eras, as if the band had discovered the secret of being in two places at once, widely separated in time, and finding a communion of the spirits of each age. It was a remarkably imaginative work, something deeply felt and beautifully realized. Everyone who fell under its spell has been waiting for what would come next, and our patience is about to be rewarded.
On May 12, 2015, 20 Buck Spin will release the band’s second album, Aria Of Vernal Tombs. Fittingly, as the vernal equinox in the northern hemisphere approaches at the end of this week, we are proud to bring you the premiere of not one but two new songs from this brilliant new album. They are the album’s first two tracks: “Ay Que Por Muy Fremosura” and “Autumnal Pyre”.
There are all sorts of reasons why the passage of time between a band’s releases can grow to the space of three and a half years. In the case of Obsequiae, it is largely a result of the care devoted to the craftsmanship of the music’s creation. The Middle Ages seem to have exerted their influence on the band in more ways than one, not merely providing an ancient template for Vicente La Camera Mariño’s harp music.
“Ay Que Por Muy Gran Fremosura” shimmers with the melody of Mariño’s harp like dappled light on a woodland stream. The piece is one of the Cantigas de Santa Maria, a collection of 13th-Century poems with musical notation created in the Galician region of Castille. The music is graceful and entrancing and it echoes as if performed under the vault of a cathedral.
While “Autumnal Pyre” begins with the stately sound of a cathedral organ, it vaults into the modern age as the traditional instruments of metal make their appearance, but the music doesn’t lose its link to the medieval era. Tanner Anderson’s intricate lead guitar melody, accompanied by a warm bass harmony, is a kindred spirit to the album’s first song, both graceful and lively. It is the air of another age, and yet it is woven together with Anderson’s caustic black metal shrieks and Andrew Della Cagna’s rolling double-bass kicks in a way that makes the unlikely union seem completely natural.
At least some of this effect is attributable to the sound of the guitars, which itself resembles the notes of instruments from centuries past. Considerable care has obviously been devoted to the production of the music and the layering of its tracks in a way that creates a rich and evocative auditory tapestry.
20 Buck Spin will release Aria Of Vernal Tombs on CD and through digital outlets on May 12th, and will follow with the LP version on June 9th. Both physical versions will be delivered in foil stamped packages. Enjoy your first tastes of Obsequiae’s engrossing new work below.