This is the closing chapter of Aosoths current musical and lyrical concept. Uncertain what that means for the future of the band, it is undoubtful that “V: The Inside Scriptures” marks the most mature output they have delivered so far. And that makes this record one of the most important black metal records of this year.
Still Aosoth maintain their dissonant and baneful approach. Many moments exchange between grinding repetitions and nightmarish atonal riffs. Surely there are some reminiscences to their landsman Deathspell Omega. But although Aosoth act in similarly obscure way, their execution is more direct. Maybe closer to the unsettling minimalism that Portal offers. And that’s only one aspect of “V”. Maybe the best know aspect of the band yet.
On the other hand there are more moments of absurd and eerie grooves. At some points there may be some parallels to the more abstract and distant understanding of harmonies that made Blut Aus Nord popular. Aosoth incorporate those elements perfectly into their trademark sound, create a versatile imagery on “V”, maintaining their discomforting and intense own profile.
Best showcase for this majestic yet disturbing mixture is the opening “A Heart To Judge” which exchanges nightmarish and bizarre melodies with baneful and blazing moments, incorporating unsettling mid-tempos with really haunting harmonies. Just for the very next song taking a massive turn into the more rude and dismal direction. There is still some kind of abstract groove, but on in a more direct way than the first song offered.
The title track combines all aspects into the most outstanding moment on this album. Sudden changes in tempo meet both grinding repetitions and disturbing harmonies. But this is not even the climax for “V”. Aosoth stay on this way, somewhere between dense atmosphere and an oppressive nightmare, creating beautiful harmonies in “Contaminating All Tongues” that emerge from an abstract, industrial-eske intro. Just to introduce another, surprising element in “Silver Dagger And The Brealess Smile”: A slight moment of hope!
Some melodies suddenly indicate that there might be some rays of light in this dark and ugly record. But that was only a brief moment. The darkness soon comes back, dwells and drowns everything in repeating gloom. The hope dies fast, in the same way the heartbeat in the outro of this song stops.
And this dying heart is a beautiful piece in the concept of Aosoth. Somehow it is part of the bands name, that was taken from goddess in the pantheon of the Order of the Nine Angles which has been described with an arrow in her heart, unable to remove it since she would die otherwise. A tormented yet strong figure. This image was present on previous releases by the band as well. And now the heart has stopped beating as this album is the end of the lyrical and musical concept. It is a pity. Because Aosoth found a perfect balance for versatile songs between nightmarish and repetitive brutality and an awesome discomforting atmosphere.