Aeternus - _Hexaeon_
(Karisma / Dark Essence Records, 2006)
by: James Montague (
I've been meaning to check out Aeternus for some time now. And after listening to _Hexaeon_, I'm still waiting. Surely this is not the band that fostered a committed following with the highly-acclaimed _...And So the Night Became_ and _Beyond the Wandering Moon_; this sounds more like the hollow corpse of a once-substantial musical body. Of course, Aeternus switched from black metal to death metal in the latter stages of their career, but most reviews suggest that they made a successful transition. Not in this case, however.A fractured affair, _Hexaeon_ contains hints of quality here and there; "Godhead Charlatan" has an engaging opening riff, and there is some potentially interesting deep throat singing and other experimental vocal techniques. However, the songwriting is sloppy, the sum of the parts not constituting a worthwhile whole. Acoustic breaks and other "calm before the storm" interludes meander pointlessly and only serve to disengage the listener. Many of the harder riffs are quite limp, some even reaching Six Feet Under levels of banality. The rhythm guitar tone is generally flat, sucking a lot of energy out of the songs. Given that _Hexaeon_ can't even hold my attention for its modest 33-minute duration, something is seriously amiss.I can't really go into much more depth than this, because Aeternus simply isn't connecting with me on this occasion. The band scores points for originality, good vocals and glimpses of musical excellence, but listening to _Hexaeon_ is a tiresome and mostly unrewarding task.
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