Album Review – Anticreation / From The Dust Of Embers (2022)

Behold this 34-minute aural declaration of war toward the insignificance of all terrain things masterfully crafted by a dynamic duo from Greece.

Born in the beginning of 2021 in Athens, Greece with the intent of creating sprawling, otherworldly abstract Death Metal embraced with lyrics about chaos, death and nightmarish realms and states of consciousness, the ruthless Black/Death Metal duo Necro on guitars and vocals and Noctus on bass and vocals, collectively known as Anticreation, emerges from the abysses of hell with their colossal debut album From the Dust of Embers, a 34-minute aural declaration of war toward the insignificance of all terrain things. Recorded, mixed and mastered at Descent Studio, and with layout by Cold Poison an logo and inner parts by Nox Fragor Art, From The Dust Of Embers is an imposing beast levitating with an immense aura of complete ruin and inevitability highly recommended for fans of Pseudogod, Immolation, Dead Congregation and Lucifyre, showcasing all the fury of Necro and Noctus accompanied by guest musicians Krzysztof Klingbein on drums and Slanderer on ambient and noise tracks.

The sinister intro Faith’s Demystifcation welcomes the listener to the Stygian lair ruled by Anticreation before the duo comes crushing in the title-track From the Dust of Embers, a straight-to-the-point, no shenanigans Black Metal onrush where Krzysztof proves why he was chosen by Necro and Noctus to take care of the drumming duties, and with Necro being not only bestial on the guitar but his guttural vocals are also infernal. Then starting in a beyond phantasmagorical manner, the obscure The Beauty of Lava brings forward elements from Doom Metal and Blackened Doom to make things even more menacing, with Noctus hammering his bass mercilessly, and the duo continues to extract sheer malignancy from their stringed weapons in Abomination Reborn while Krzysztof dictates the pace with his pounding beats. Put differently, it’s sulfurous Black Metal at its finest spiced up by a humongous dosage of Death Metal roars, whereas The Last Perception sounds even more demented and vicious than its predecessors, resulting in a Black Metal extravaganza where Necro’s strident, devilish riffs will pierce your mind ruthlessly.

Krzysztof smashes his drums like a beast in A Journey Into the Throat of Death, giving it a tribalistic vibe while the guitars and bass sound as caustic as possible, flowing into the interlude The Swarm, which will send shivers down your spine thanks to all the eerie, otherworldly noises and sounds crafted by Anticreation until all hell breaks loose in Unborn, a brutal Black Metal aria where Necro and Noctus once again darken our minds with their riffs and bass lines, not to mention how inhumane Krzysztof sounds behind his drums. Kathagiasis, the last song from the regular version of the album, showcases wicked vociferations by Necro accompanied by the menacing bass by Noctus, whereas lastly we’re treated to more of their caustic fusion of Black and Death Metal that’s worth the investment in the digital version of the album with the bonus track The Supreme Terror, which as its name already says will terrorize you for all eternity.

There’s no light at the end of the tunnel for your damned soul, which means the only option left for you is to succumb to the dark side and join Anticreation on their devilish path, and you can do so by following the band on Facebook and by purchasing the amazing From The Dust Of Embers from the band’s own BandCamp page, as well as from the Sentient Ruin Laboratories’ BandCamp page or webstore, or from the Nuclear Winter Records’ BandCamp page. In the end, we’re all insignificant, and Anticreation are among us to show us this unwanted truth armed with From The Dust Of Embers, an album that will surely be considered one of the top metal albums hailing from Greece this year.

Best moments of the album: From the Dust of Embers, Abomination Reborn and Unborn.

Worst moments of the album: The Beauty of Lava.

Released in 2022 Sentient Ruin Laboratories/Nuclear Winter Records

Track listing
1. Faith’s Demystifcation 0:45
2. From the Dust of Embers 4:04
3. The Beauty of Lava 5:44
4. Abomination Reborn 4:48
5. The Last Perception 4:10
6. A Journey Into the Throat of Death 4:33
7. The Swarm 0:45
8. Unborn 4:26
9. Kathagiasis 4:37

Digital Edition bonus track
10. The Supreme Terror 3:16

Band members
Necro – guitars, vocals
Noctus – bass, vocals

Guest musicians
Krzysztof Klingbein – drums
Slanderer – ambient/noise tracks

Metal Chick of the Month – Marjolaine Bernard

Behind shivering drops of my soul… Dancing under a dry sky the void’s pouring inside…

Let’s take a flight to Paris, the capital and most populous city of France, where among several activities and attractions you can visit the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre Museum and the Notre Dame Cathedral, or simply find a traditional French café on the famous Avenue des Champs-Élysées to enjoy a nice, traditional croissant. If you’re a metalhead, there are also some excellent metal pubs and venues for you to go, such as Le Black Dog, James Hetfeeld’s and Le Cavern, and if you’re lucky enough you might enjoy a live concert by Wildpath, a female-fronted Symphonic Power Metal band formed in Paris in 2001 where, since 2008, our metal chick of the month has been giving life to their lyrics. I’m talking about French vocalist Marjolaine Bernard, a very talented and young musician who will certainly attract the attention of fans of melodic female voices like Floor Jansen and Tarja Turunen.

Born on June 4, 1983, Marjolaine started in the world of music at a very young age, first with the piano, then by joining a choir after watching a children’s concert, and since then she has never stopped singing. Furthermore, our French girl has been singing metal for a long time, being part of different small independent bands as a teenager and being clearly inspired by names like Floor and Tarja. However, Marjolaine stated that, despite Floor and Tarja (among other renowned vocalists) still being a reference to her, they’re not necessarily what she listens to nowadays and she doesn’t see herself as a Symphonic Metal singer, but just as a musician among other musicians trying to work with her voice in the best way possible, always in line with the music being played.

Marjolaine and her bandmates from Wildpath draw inspiration to create their music from several distinct sources, from electro to reggae, from metal to ambient music, like a giant melting pot. Furthermore, she mentioned she loves movie scores and soundtracks, being highly influenced by amazing composers such as Hans Zimmer and Danny Elfman, also getting ideas from music from video games. She said that metal is a style where you’re allowed to let go with musical expressions and experimentations, and that’s the path that’s being constantly explored by the band in recent years. Forging elements from rock, metal, electro, folk, symphonic and traditional music, always caring for harmony and energy, Wildpath are a band in continuous evolution, and Marjolaine’s voice is exactly what the music needs to become more lively and appealing, as you’ll see below when we talk about her career with the band.

However, before Wildpath, there was Ad Vitam Aeternam, which is Latin for “To (or Towards) Eternal Life”, a Melodic Gothic Metal band formed in 1999 in Paris with whom Marjolaine played until 2005. She recorded the album Abstract Senses with Ad Vitam Aeternam in 2004, that being the only official release by the band since their inception. You can take a listen at the entire album HERE, or also enjoy individual songs from the album such as Dementia and In The Throes of Apocalypse, always paying attention to how different the music style by Ad Vitam Aeternam was from Wildpath, which only shows how versatile Marjolaine is as a vocalist.

It was in the year of 2008 that she finally joined Wildpath, which as already mentioned was formed back in 2001 by keyboardist Alexis Garsault and guitarist Olivier Caron in Paris, having released their debut album Nyx Secrets in 2005 (without Marjolaine on vocals, obviously). After Marjolaine became the lead singer for Wildpath, the band released three full-length albums, Non Omnis Moriar in 2009 (which by the way had its name inspired by the Odes by Roman lyric poet Horace and means “I shall not all die” or “not all of me will die”), Underneath in 2011 and Disclosure in 2015, as well as a very special release featuring acoustic versions of tracks from previous albums in 2016, titled Still – Acoustic Live Experience. You can get a very good taste of how smooth and tuneful Marjolaine’s vocals are in songs such as Petrichor, The Raven, Absentia, Confined and Excinere, listen to the entire albums Disclosure and Underneath, enjoy the acoustic versions from Still for the songs Everlasting Wish and Unborn, or also have fun with Marjolaine and the others with two live “studio” versions for the songs Buried Moon and Secret’s Case.

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If you prefer Wildpath live in front of a bunch of metalheads, I recommend this 2012 version of Buried Moon and Dive live at Le Grand Rex in Paris during the IronSquid StarCraft 2 World Championship Finals, as well as Non Omnis Moriar live in Eloyes, France in 2010; Unborn and Ghost Memories live at Le Divan Du Monde in Paris in 2015; or even this full concert  in 2012 during a mini-festival named Metal Symphonic Quest II in Tours, a city located in the centre-west of France. The festival also had the bands Adrana, Lost Opera, Roman Rouzine The Tria and Eidon, but it was Wildpath who headlined the night. And if you think you need to go all the way to France to watch Wildpath live, you’re wrong, as in 2016 the band played their first gig in the UK at The Quinphonic Festival 2 at The Roadhouse Birmingham. How far do you think Marjolaine and Wildpath can go?

As a guest musician, Marjolaine was part of the only album released by French Melodic Heavy/Power Metal band Silent Fall, entitled Otherwise, from 2010, doing choir vocals in the whole album and main female vocals on the song This Could Have Been. If you’re curious to know how she was invited to be part of the album, the answer is quite simple. Olivier Caron, Wildpath’s own guitarist, was also the lead guitarist for Silent Fall, making it a lot easier for Marjolaine to add her vocals to their music in an effective and exciting way.

When asked about her favorite song of all time, including all types of music and eras, her answer was quite unique, citing the classic Sanvean: I Am Your Shadow (or simply Sanvean) by the iconic Australian musical project Dead Can Dance, featured on their first official live album Toward the Within, released in 1994, an album that contains 15 songs, of which only four appeared on their previous albums. Sanvean was later re-recorded by one of the masterminds behind Dead Can Dance, Lisa Gerrard, on her 1995 solo album The Mirror Pool. In regards to heavy music, her first rock album was the classic Angels Fall First, the debut studio album by Finnish Symphonic Metal band Nightwish. With cult songs such as Elvenpath, Beauty and the Beast and Astral Romance, it’s easy to understand why Marjolaine fell in love for Symphonic Metal, right?

Marjolaine was also questioned about her favorite or best moments as an artist, and albeit she said there have been already lots of amazing memories with Wildpath, one of her favorite experiences was a concert with a “quatour” (a special form of string quartet that developed in Paris around 1775 and became one of the leading genres of Parisian music until the French Revolution) and a choir at La Scène Bastille, saying that seeing a symphony coming alive was truly fantastic. In addition, she also listed as one of her favorite moments when the band played with French progressive guitarist Patrick Rondat, and lastly the band’s famous performance in 2015 at Le Divan du Monde.

As previously mentioned, among her main influences we’ll find names such as Floor and Tarja, with Floor in particular being a huge inspiration for Marjolaine as she’s one of the few contemporary female singers who can combine lyrical songs with very dynamic rock vocals in a precise manner. However, out of the metal and rock scene, her favorite singer is Lisa Gerrard, who apart from her work with Dead Can Dance was also responsible for several other renowned projects, including a Golden Globe Award for the music score to the film Gladiator, on which she collaborated with Hans Zimmer.

Another interesting fact about Marjolaine is that her stage outfit is created by one of her students, who proposed to create special clothes tailored for their live performances, working with the band’s colors and adding her own personal touch to the creations. That stylist is from a company called Le Paon, a new brand from the independent French scene. Marjolaine and the stylist collaborate with each other in the creation of the outfits, first discussing new ideas orally and then working together on drawings and other details, until the stylist begins working on the whole realization of the clothes. One of her first new looks debuted at the concert at Le Divan du Monde in 2015, and in her opinion it was already a great evolution from her previous costumes.

Lastly, when asked about places or regions she would like to play with Wildpath, Marjolaine answered she would love to go to Brittany (a cultural region in the north-west of France) because she has family there, or also other French cities such as Lyon. Outside of France, she mentioned Belgium, Switzerland and Luxemburg as countries she would love to visit with her band, as well as other more distant places like Japan and South America, but that the high cost of playing in those places make the trip almost impossible, at least for now. It’s interesting that she didn’t mention the United States or Canada on her list, two major markets for heavy music, in special our French-speaking province of Quebec here in Canada. Well, let’s hope she just “forgot” to mention Canada, and that one day we have the pleasure of seeing Wildpath kicking ass live in our home and native land.

Marjolaine Bernard’s Official Facebook page
Marjolaine Bernard’s Official Twitter
Wildpath’s Official Facebook page
Wildpath’s Official Twitter
Wildpath’s Official YouTube