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Deathspell Omega: Si monumentum requires, circumspice

03/12/07  ||  theProphet

From Wikipedia:

Initially, Deathspell Omega produced raw, traditional black metal akin to Darkthrone’s “Transilvanian Hunger”. However, their 2004 release, “Si Monumentum Requires, Circumspice”, marked a change to a vastly more experimental (and well-recorded) sound

I never bothered to check out the earlier material of Deathspell Material (henceforth known in this review as DsO), but I can only say that the mentioned change of direction was one of the most important events in metal in general, and black metal in particular. This album fills me with such reverence that I wont even try to be funny in this review, there is nothing funny about “Si Monumentum Requires, Circumspice”, not in the least. Everything is just, terrifying, beautiful, thought provoking, mind numbing. This is as close to perfection as you can possibly come.

“Si Monumentum Requires, Circumspice” is the first part of a trilogy said to deal with different theological issues, such as God, Satan and man’s relationship with the two. Sounds pretentious? Perhaps… and it certainly would be if DsO didn’t manage to pull it all off in such a grand fashion. You can really hear that these guys believe in what they are preaching, and they have the knowledge and conviction to back it up.

Musically, “Si Monumentum Requires, Circumspice” is hard to describe, but think of it as a maelstrom of disharmonies, yet filled with glimpses of immense beauty. For example, listen to the three “Prayes” that divides the album (each of them opens a side on the double LP version). Listen to the part at 0:30 in “Jubilate Deo” or the part at 3:59 in the same song. Or listen to the incredible choral section at 3:45 of “Carnal Malefactor”, these are parts that, in this context, further add to the perversion with their incredible beauty.

We can nowadays see a strong surge of black metal bands that are more ideologically thorough in their artistry, and to me, the most thorough of them all is Deathspell Omega.

So, did this get a little too serious? Hell, it doesn’t stop here; to close this review I will give you a quote from “Sola Fide I”:

“My actions shall lead other hearts away from salvation.”


It should be noted that there are no certain facts that the members listed below are actually in Deathspell Omega.

  • Information
  • Released: 2004
  • Label: Norma Evangelium Diaboli
  • Website: none
  • Band
  • Mikko Aspa: vocals
  • Hasjarl: guitars
  • Khaos: bass
  • Tracklist
  • 01. First Prayer
  • 02. Sola Fide I
  • 03. Sola Fide II
  • 04. Second Prayer
  • 05. Blessed Are the Dead Whiche Dye In the Lorde
  • 06. Hétoïmasia
  • 07. Third Prayer
  • 08. Si Monumentum Reqvires, Circumspice
  • 09. Odium Nostrum
  • 10. Jubilate Deo (O Be Joyful In the Lord)
  • 11. Carnal Malefactor
  • 12. Drink the Devil’s Blood
  • 13. Malign Paradigm