Album Review: Incursus – Eternal Funeral Trance

Incursus - Eternal Funeral Trance

Incursus [USA]
Eternal Funeral Trance
2009
Full Length
Forever Plagued Records
Black Metal

Featuring one time member of Kult ov Azazel and Nightbringer, both of which have been rather pleasant discoveries, Incursus is another project of VJS, with Eternal Funeral Trance being the band’s debut full length release.

Yet Incursus presents a different style of black metal from VJS’ other bands. The band sets down a rather depressive mood with the keyboards on the intro of opening track A Ravenous Despair, hinting towards a bleak and desolate journey for the listener, and one would almost expect black metal in the form of bands such as Drowning the Light. But Incursus surprises listener, with When Death Enthrones Our Darkness instead presenting a sound that leans more towards French black metal in the veins of bands like Deathspell Omega, with the generous usage of dissonant chords and riffing patterns, and the way that the songs are structured, such as the chaos that is prevalent on tracks like Phantasmagoria. However, the band does not forget its original black metal roots, with the riffs of VJS at times reminding one of pioneering second wave black metal bands such as Mayhem.

Horidus’ tortured shrieks further add to the intensity in the music, with the desperate pleas that go unheard leaving the listener to slowly rot in the darkness of Incursus‘ music, and the layering of growls and shrieks adds to the entire sinister feel that the band emanates. The band’s intention to make Eternal Funeral Trance an album that is as disturbing as possible is also displayed through the usage of various effects on the instruments, such as moments towards the end of Phantasmagoria. This is also done through the song arrangements, with the intertwining between faster and mid-paced segments not only preventing this album from being a complete blast fest, but also resulting in nice build ups to the various high points of the album, with the slower moments being incredibly unsettling in themselves as well. Lead guitars are pretty uncommon, but when present, the trem-picked, trebly leads ensure that they help to reinforce the uneasiness in the listener as well.

Venka even sees the band exploring the ambient side of the band, with the instrumental track consisting of nothing but dense, heavy atmospherics, not unlike recent exploits of bands such as Spektr, minus the industrial elements of the aforementioned. The various sound effects that are added on top of the already disturbing backdrop adds to the overall impact, easily causing one to jump a little with the sudden sounds of banging and the hitting of gongs on the track.

And all these are drenched in a heavy, dense atmosphere throughout, not unlike the way Finnish bands such as Horna and Satanic Warmaster, and VJS’ previous band, Nightbringer, have done so. The ambient that is invoked with the trem-picked riffs, and the production of the album are all key on the album, making for Eternal Funeral Trance to be an even more suffocating experience than it already is.

Yet all this while, the band manages to live up to the album’s namesake, with the listener easily keep enchanted and in a trance once the album starts, all the way till the end with the superb songwriting that is on the album.

Incursus on the internet:
Forever Plagued Records

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