This is largely old-school Satanic black metal, firmly influenced by the 90s Scandinavian second wave style, but not without its own merits or character.
I say largely old-school, as the delivery is fresh and vibrant, and the recording is very much a contemporary one, despite remaining true to its source material. The album has a very strong sound that manages to hit the right aesthetic tone for this kind of black metal, while still carrying frosted power and strength in huge amounts.
I must confess that I can rarely get enough of this kind of stuff. Of course, if this was poorly played, written, or performed, (or whatever), then it would be a different story, but Asagraum have produced something extremely enjoyable here, and I can’t help but lap it up.
Featuring a good combination of venomous aggression, dark atmosphere, and blackened melody, these songs are instantly appealing and extremely satisfying examples of second wave fury. The band certainly have an ear for the style, and some of the riffs and melodies used are quite delectable. There’s also an intricacy to some of the guitarwork that I find quite engaging.
The songs are very well-written and quickly reveal a band with both a passion and a talent for this kind of music. The album flows well and has a pleasing amount of diversity within its stylistic constraints. Asagraum transport the listener to the frosted, icy, cursed realms of the winterdemons more effectively and completely than most.
I must particularly commend the singer’s voice too. High pitched and razor-sharp, her serrated shrieks cut through the music like ice, and her performance is remarkable. She has such a piercing scream that she almost draws blood.
Potestas Magicum Diaboli is an exemplary release. For a top-quality hit of pure blackened hatred and venom, you can’t go wrong with this.
Very highly recommended.