Axioma are a post-black metal band from the US and this is their debut EP.
Featuring a member of Keelhaul and Brain Tentacles, I had high hopes for this release, partially based on this, and partially for the description of what Opia sounded like. I haven’t been disappointed.
Axioma play dark black metal with a modern veneer that takes elements from other sub-genres to heart; progressive, atmospheric, doom, and post-metal, to name just a few. These various parts are merged into the writing naturally and easy, so each song hits its intended mark.
The vocals are charismatic roars/screams that are agreeably atypical for the style, but then Axioma aren’t too concerned about genre standards. Nor should they be.
Blackened riffs are added to with some doom influences in the slower sections. The slower parts also have a tendency to make use of the atmospheric elements too, and these parts work really well for me. The faster sections of the songs have an undeniably modern approach, although they’re still recognisably blackened in origin.
Some of the riffs are very inspired. A small amount of melody is used, but the songs mainly use the guitars to work holistically to create atmosphere and mood in conjunction with everything else. That, or they just tear the Hell out of things with pure aggression.
The band don’t lack for creativity, and every song on this release has a firm identity and theme all of its own. No time is wasted; even a track like The Exit, which could easily have come across as a throwaway interlude in the hands of a lesser band. Here though, the acoustic guitar and piano merge together to create a very engaging short piece of music.
Each song has little ideas that mark it out from the others. Axioma haven’t restrained themselves at all on Opia, and I hope they continue to write their music in this manner in the future, as the results are very worthwhile.
This is an impressive and very accomplished debut release. The modern take on dark metal that blurs genres with ease under a post-black metal moniker is a particular favourite of mine, and in Axioma I’ve discovered an absolute gem. I cannot wait to hear more from them on their next release.
Very highly recommended.
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