Sermon – Of Golden Verse (Review)

Sermon - Of Golden VerseThis is the second album from UK progressive metal band Sermon.

Of Golden Verse is a 49-minute tour de force of engaging progressive metal. Sermon’s new album immediately grabs your attention with its vibrant, feeling-focused personality, and holds it throughout the running time by the sheer quality and richness of its material.

For a rough idea of what Sermon offer, you can hear elements of bands like Tool, Between the Buried and Me, Katatonia, Earthtone9, Sleep Token, and Opeth in Of Golden Verse. Although, it should be noted, Sermon are definitely their own creation.

This is a modern interpretation of progressive metal that incorporates some elements of melodic doom, alongside some extreme metal touches. The songs are highly emotive and textured. This is music that knows how to express itself, be that through an aggressive demeanour, a pulsing rhythmic sensibility, or a fully formed atmospheric soundscape. It’s frequently hypnotic, with a standout drumming performance that powers much of the music here.

Rich melody and immersive atmosphere is seamlessly incorporated into a rhythmic progressive framework that likes to find the best ways to express itself. Intricate and nuanced, but with power and grace, the music is bold and extravagant, while also sounding personal and intimate. The meshing together of sounds, themes, and ideas that might, on the surface of it, be contradictory in another band’s hands, here works flawlessly to achieve a very individual work. Of Golden Verse is idiosyncratic and charismatic, and packs one Hell of a punch.

Of Golden Verse is an album that has its own voice. Sermon have produced something of very high quality, the sort of release that should by rights catapult them into the highest metal echelons. Regardless of whether it does that or not, this is an album that I urge you to listen to if you’re a fan of contemporary progressive metal.

Essential listening.


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