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4.32 | 33 ratings | 5 reviews
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Album · 2007


1. Obombration (4:48)
2. The Shrine of Mad Laughter (10:37)
3. Bread of Bitterness (7:49)
4. The Repellent Scars of Abandon & Election (11:40)
5. A Chore for the Lost (9:15)
6. Obombration (2:07)

Total Time: 46:18


- Hasjarl / guitars
- Khaos / bass
- Mikko Aspa / vocals

About this release

Norma Evangelium Diaboli, July 16, 2007.

Thanks to kogaionon, Unitron for the updates


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Specialists/collaborators reviews

I have been interested in this band for a very long time, and one of the main reasons behind my interest is because of the mystery behind them. No one knows who these guys are, they don't play live, all we know is that they are French.

The French metal scene over the years has become definitely one of the most interesting, especially the Black Metal scene, with bands like Blut Aus Nord making some of the darkest music in music history. Back in the day, Deathspell Omega did have a more traditional low budget black metal sound, but over the past few years, there production style has progressed, with this album in particular showing a fulcrum between their future more cleaner sounding production.

The production on this album is a mixed plate for me. Sometimes I love the sounds that are being produced, especially the guitar sound, which sounds like a blood laced razor. The negative side is the use of echo which can at times oversaturate the sound, especially with the drums and the vocals. The drums are also turned up a bit too high in the mix which can at times take effect away from the vocals. Although, I must admit, the drums on this album are completely insane.

The album's opener and closer “Obombration” is a rather interesting composition. The intro sounds like monks summoning the devil while the closer sounds like the trumpets of heaven proclaiming the apocalypse.

“Bread Of Bitterness” one of my favourite songs on the album is a rather interesting piece. One of my favourite moments has to be the guitar solo in the beginning. It's one of the most unique and insane guitar solos I've ever heard.

“A Chore For The Lost,” the album's closer starts off rather soft and creepy. Silence almost emerges before an explosion happens and scares the hell out of you (I have to admit I jumped a bit). A brilliant way to close of the themes of the album and to even hear them again at the end.

In conclusion, this is one of the darkest albums I've ever heard. The music of this album and especially the production just sounds like the soundtrack to the end of the world, but with an evil twist. This band and especially this album really isn't an easily accessibly album, but I would say that it is an experience. If you want to hear some of the darkest sounds ever made, give a listen to this, and then try Blut Aus Nord's “Mort”, cause it's another bullet to bite.

Deathspell Omega's second concept album surrounding their philosophical contemplation of Satanic metaphysics is a real treat for those who don't mind (or positively enjoy) a little Satan in their metal and are interested in experimental black metal formats which stretch the boundaries of the genre. As well as including some intriguing quiet moments between its eruptions of black metal fury, the album is also significantly more varied than many avant-black metal albums when it comes to the actual rocking out - at points they create a chaotic wall of noise, but there's moments where almost traditional metal riffing will break out unexpectedly here and there. A complex and fascinating album.
Conor Fynes
'Fas - Ite, Maledicti, In Ignem Aeturnum' - Deathspell Omega (100/100)

The road to hell may be paved with good intentions, but for all their rebellious sincerity, it is rare that a black metal band comes close to delivering a substantial counter-argument against Christianity and religious hegemony. The Satan-hailing blasphemy often comes off as a gimmick, and in none but the most inspired cases does a black metal band carry the intellectual weight to back up their ideological claims. And even if someone managed to intellectually transcend the adolescent 'kvlt' and form a Satanic treatise worthy of critique, crafting the art to uplift it is a whole other matter. From Hildegaard von Bingen to Arvo Pärt and everything between and before, Man has created works to honour God. It would seem that musicians in black metal would have the odds stacked against them. The 'Satanic panic' is decades since over, and an increasingly secular society has closed many people off to the prevailing religious thought, let alone a fringe spirituality like true Satanism.

Deathspell Omega's Fas - Ite, Maledicti, in Ignem Aeternum came virtually out of nowhere in that regard. Although the liturgical spiel on their previous album Si Monvmentvm Requires, Circvmspice introduced an intellectually tangible inversion of Catholic mythology, it wasn't until this album that DSO were finally making music worthy of rivalling sacred traditions, and-- dare I say it-- rivalling the greatest sacred works of Bach or Handel through sheer force of their mirror-image dissonance. There's no clear origin from which to directly trace the shape and effect of this album; arguably besides The Ruins of Beverast, none other than Deathspell Omega have managed to effectively galvanize the black metal genre into something comparable with the world's greatest erudite art. Fas - Ite, Maledicti, in Ignem Aeternum stands as black metal's greatest testament, and so it shall remain for the ever-foreseeable future.

The word 'dissonance' has lost its power when speaking of Deathspell Omega; objectively speaking, it is applicable to the album's brushfire chaos, but simply calling DSO's music 'dissonant' fails to mention how masterfully they harness that power. I've even seen this album's wonton passages referred to as 'noise'-- again, this only infers a surface-level appreciation of the music. The first "Obombration" (an invented term, by the way, derived for the latin root "to overshadow") conjures a jazz-accented control over its ugliness, building ominously atop its Orthodox soundscape. It's impossible not to feel startled by the instantaneous eruption that sparks "The Shrine of Mad Laughter". The guitars frantically buzz away, the drums seem to be in an amphetamine-induced fervour of their own making, and Aspa's vocals presence enough to fill the farthest corners of a cathedral if the occasion ever called for it. If you're a fresh listener to this album, it doesn't matter how attentive or open-minded you are; the music will flurry past your ears like a fucking sandstorm. There is not the capacity in humans to pick everything up at once. For my own experience of it, I was at once shocked-- even terrified-- but I felt myself hard-pressed to pick out memorable ideas at first. My grasp of the music was initially limited to what I understood to be movements in the music: haunted oases of churchyard atmosphere flung amidst indecipherably dense aggression. Like all but the most popular Western classical music, the brain takes a few repeated listens before you start to see how the pieces fit together.

Although I'd never presume to posit an appreciation for Fas as a measuring stick for good taste in black metal, I get the impression many of the people who dislike this album didn't get past the stage of initial confusion. This is quite understandable. Even as an ardent fan of this album for years, I find myself hesitant to return to it after going some time without listening to it. Unlike Si Monuvmentvm or its near-equally good 2010 successor Paracletus, there's no way to extract a single song from Fas to enjoy it on its own. Nor is there a way to half-attend to listen, lest the album buzz past with all but the broadest strokes having escaped you. Recently returning to listen to Fas, I am reminded how much melody and beauty (albeit subtle) is available to the listener upon deconstructing the music. Though you may not notice it when approaching the music as a whole, Hasjarl's guitarwork incorporates unlikely melodies and harmonies, and many of them are deceptively beautiful. Contrary to the word of its detractors, none of the dissonance on Fas is for its own sake. With parts like the jazz-from-hell intro to "A Chore for the Lost", I get the strange impression that Fas was originally beautiful music that was bastardized with a sense of nagging unease. There is a familiarity of classical music to DSO's craft here, but it is an aberrant mutation from that foundation at its closest. Closing the album with a faux-orchestra on the second "Obombration", that impression is compounded. It makes sense that a legitimately Satanic form of sacred music would mirror the form of its hegemonic equivalent, but achieve its ends through a very different set of means.

In an imposing sense, Fas - Ite, Maledicti, in Ignem Aeturnum is a realization of a promise the early black metal pioneers made two decades prior to its release. If black metal is often too primitive to contest Christianity in any but a pigheaded rebellious sense, Deathspell Omega took the genre to its natural conclusion here. It's strange to think that nearly a decade has passed now since Fas was unveiled to the world; if it came out today, or a decade from now, it would still shock those who came upon it. That, in spite of the countless followers they've inspired in the years since. How many albums can be mentioned that retain their cutting-edge impression even months (let alone years) after they're available for the public's digestion? DSO created one of the boldest testaments in modern music of any genre with this album, and I think the rest of this feeble scene is still trying to catch up.

Members reviews

“A masterpiece of Avant-garde Black and one of the greatest releases in extreme music” – I think these are the words that best describe this absolutely astonishing creation.

The album is framed by the songs ‘Obombration’, grandiose pieces of ravishing beauty which give the album a circle-like representation of the Infinite. Unlike the rest of the album’s lyrics written in English, the two Obombrations have Latin and Greek words that are used to create the best intro and outro for this album:

“Hagios ho Theos, Sanctus Deus / Hagios Ischyros, Sanctus Fortis

Deus, judica me... / ut quid, Domine, recessisti longe?

Judica me... perinde ac cadaver”

“Deus, judica me / ... et factus est sudor eius sicut guttae sanguinis decurrentis in terram.

Domine, in pulverem mortis deduxisti me / perinde ac cadaver.”


“God, judge me / ...and his sweat was made as drops of blood running down to earth.

Lord, into the dust of death you guided me / just as a cadaver.”

Having in mind the style created on the preceding album "Si Monvmentvm Reqvires, Circvmspice", we venture ourselves into the depths of this abyssal creation to firstly find ‘The Shrine of Mad Laughter’ whose instrumentation is just pure technical madness unleashed before ‘Bread of Bitterness’ and ‘The Repellent Scars of Abandon and Election’, songs filled with brilliantly-created dissonance, crushing drumming and catchy guitar riffs and tremolos that continue towards ‘A Chore for the Lost’ with mind-numbing complexity. The atmosphere created during this 46mins trip is the result of flawless album construction, the brain-child of these unknown geniuses.
Jake Kobrin
Fas - Ite, Maledicti, in Ignem Aeternum (Latin for Divine law - Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire) is the second album amongst the conceptual trilogy by French black metallers Deathspell Omega. Though the albums within the trinity are linked by concept, they are all musically unique. The trilogy proclaims the relationships of God, Satan, and man. Fas' concept is focused around man. The album was released by the French underground black metal label Norma Evangelium Diaboli in Europe on July 16th, and in the US by Ajna Offensive (and distributed by Southern Lord) on the 17th. It was originally released both as a CD Digipak and on vinyl LP. The vinyl version also contains a poster of the cover and a 12 inch booklet. Despite it's large size, the booklet is identical to the Digipak version. One who enters the domain of this 45 minute LP will certainly be left drawn and exhausted by the end. This album is harsh, brutal, and inexplicably magical. Through the use of technical insanity and subtle atmospheric details, Deathspell Omega created an experience unlike one in existence before. Although the basis of this album is Black Metal, do not confuse it with raw black metal via Darkthrone or Mayhem and do not be misguided by the bands primitive early recordings either. They have long since progressed above the cheesy generic black metal of their early career. Since then they have utilized a much cleaner produced aesthetic and instead of pumping gnarly dissonance, they have acquired a method of utmost technicality. Through this blazing disarray of impossible-to-play drum lines and nimble guitars are groovy post-esque segments that allow the listener a bit of time to rest. A physical rest perhaps, though these segments certainly do not lighten the atmosphere. Imagine an Isis cover band that had died and is playing in an eternal prison within hell. And I'm not alluding that these parts were ripped off of Isis, they are certainly unique. The amount of details hidden within this album is incredible. I have listened to the album maybe 40 or 50 times now and upon each spin I unearth new layers that I was previously unaware of. For example, it was only the last time I listened to the album that I realized how prominent the use of piano is. Even in the heavy chaotic moments there is that far off layer of creepily out of tune piano that just adds to the atmosphere. Further more there are terrified screams, choral arrangements, and samples of classical music (played on cello I believe) within the mix. In my opinion it is the ability to dig and analyze and be surprised by music even after dozens of repeated listens that certifies an album as purely progressive. In conclusion, this is probably the most accomplished piece of Black Metal to be yet released. It is my second favorite album of all time and it is one that I believe I will enjoy for years to come. I highly recommend it for fans of tech/extreme or avant-garde prog (though perhaps post-metalers will enjoy it as well). If you do not listen to this album you are doing a disservice to the entire history of metal... - Jake Kobrin

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