As the Polish musical machine punches on through the steel and mortar that blocks them, Sacrilegium erupts as a monolith from the 1990’s; a stain on music as black as the lyrical settings that their music portrays. Without question, Sacrilegium is a diamond in the rough of black metal that is centered around the themes of individual spirituality, nature, impending darkness, and the final moments of Paganism that now come forth, in a full circle type manner in 2017 with their newest release, Ritual (EP).
A journey to animosity follows with the Polish black metal monsters, as Sacrilegium manages to spawn an endless onslaught of perpetual assaults through consistent poundings on the percussion which is led by MG 42, the slicing guitar and vocals handled by Suclagus, and the ripping chords through Hellthorn handled on the bass. As a unit, Sacrilegium moves together and focuses on keeping a tight-knit on their trifecta. Even as the Ritual (EP) only barely reaches into the fourteen-minute span, Sacrilegium creates a hellish world of damnation and suffering. The band resembles a cultist styling as they function like clockwork, playing off of the energy of each member and capitalizing on creating truly crushing blows that resonate over and over again. In a professional manner, Sacrilegium is frightening at times and bares their teeth through the entire journey. In a literal sense, Sacrilegium is a crisp ride on a chimera that rejuvenates the system and takes a quick dash for the kill in a necessary time frame.
The tracks on Ritual (EP) manage to bleed into each other and never feel as though they drag on. Even while keeping the sound rather similar to each other, they still feature slight breakdowns where Suclagus will have a featured part in perhaps a solo on the guitar or a spotlight for his vocals. The same can be said for the other members, both MG 42 and Hellthorn who have specific sections of a track mapped out to fit their play styles. This gives Sacrilegium an extended edge when creating a diversity within their sound. To break up the monotony, they decide to layer additional instruments like synthesizers, backing vocals, and other atmospheric sounds to fill some of the voids left by the band.
For an example, on the self-titled track, “Ritual”, there is a gentle use of ethereal voices to lead in the instruments like hunting giants on a smaller prey. The voices are overpowering to an extent and follow a continuous pattern of containing some sort of other-worldly entity in black metal, but Sacrilegium uses the bleeding seguing motions to their advantage as “Ritual” moves into fruition. It becomes a swift, balancing act between a vicious frenzy of blast beats and continually pulverizing musical sense that only until succumbing to the final moments of silence does it finally cease.
Ritual (EP) is a standing ovation to the old days of metal music and a call to arms for showing new bands how it can be done again. Sacrilegium does not exactly flip the script and provide any ideas that are entirely new or from the deep recesses, but it does provide a substantial look into the future album being released by Sacrilegium sometime this year. Black metal can become an oversaturated medium by some standards, but Sacrilegium manages to stay on top of the incoming competition as they have done for the past near thirty-years.