Adaestuo - Tacent SemitaeAs readers of Angry Metal Guy, y’all know what happens when a new black metal band throws itself at the teeming hordes while trying to remain anonymous. Guessing games ensue. Frantic-yet-fruitless searches begin on various websites. Unicorns mysteriously appear. Nine times out of ten, though, nothing new is really brought to the forefront of our collective psyche. In other words, anonymous rehashes can only go so far, and repaintings of the same ol’ Deathspell Omega portrait get old quickly. So, when I grabbed Adaestuo‘s debut mini-album, the 21-minute Tacent Semitae, I expected more French-leaning angular blackness, only this time from a trio from parts unknown.1

And I was only partially correct. Sure, multi-instrumentalists VJS and P.E. Packain reaped what was left of the harvest that Si Monvmentvm Reqvires, Circvmspice once sowed. However, the duo succeeds in creating a suffocating vortex within such a well-trod environment. Both opener “The Abyss (Otchłań)” and “Destroyer of Constellations (Niszczyciel Gwiazdozbiorów)” leave the listener with little breathing space while building a foundation of fear and discomfort. The duo’s command of ambience and atmosphere on the two non-conventional black metal tracks (“Cicatrices Plexae (Scar-Braids)” and closer “Tacent Semitae (Silent Paths)”) compound the dread, further distancing themselves from the various bands aping from the French.

However, the band’s biggest Ace of Spades dwells within the multi-octave vocal cords of one Hekte Zaren. Her Diamanda Galas-like operatic wails beckon like a siren’s call of the dead, only to adopt a Gollum-esque rasp once the snare of her voice entraps you. Nowhere is this most effective than on “Tacent Semitae (Silent Paths).” The sounds of a single bell draws your ear, and Zaren’s singing pulls you into an opera that you want no part of, as hushed and nervously whispered (panting, even?) vocals chant a discordant hymn. As the atmosphere dies out, a final bell tolls, and Zaren’s final wailing closes out the song (and album) in gloriously warped fashion. Spine-chilling, and hands-down one of my favorite closing songs of the past year.


The album possesses a standard black metal mix. Guitars are trebly and up-front, the drums sound mechanical and cold, and bass is practically non-existent. Zaren’s voice weaves in-and-out effortlessly, her vocals acting as a tool to lull you into a false sense of comfort before pulling you in for the kill. My issues with Tacent Semitae, however, lie in the fact that, while expertly crafted, it’s still lifting a bit too heavily from DsO and Blut Aus Nord. In fact, I found myself digging the two ambient songs the most, because while the band is effective at angular black metal, they become a frightening entity when they do away with the black metal and explore more atmospheric waters. Seriously, you have to hear “Tacent Semitae (Silent Paths)” with headphones on in a darkened room. Thank me later.

I went into Tacent Semitae with little expectations, and was inspired by the atmosphere and Zaren’s incredible voice. In 21 minutes, Adaestuo impressed me more than bands writing albums with double (or even triple) the length. If you’re craving something a little bit different than the standard French black metal of a decade ago, you can do far worse than Tacent Semitae. I can only imagine what they’ll create with a full-length.

Rating: 3.0/5.0
DR: 7 | Format Reviewed: 224 kbps mp3
Label: World Terror Committee Productions
Releases Worldwide: November 11th, 2016

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  1. The same mysterious land that produced wrestling legends The Missing Link and The Ultimate Warrior.
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  • AlphaBetaFoxface

    Kinda reads like a 3.5. Great review regardless, will definitely be checking this one out!

    • Grymm

      I was waffling between a 3 and a 3.5, and when you waffle, you aim down.

      That said, this is a good, if short, release. I just wish the title track was available for preview, as that’s one of the most atmospheric (and creepy) tracks I’ve heard all year.

      • Diego Molero

        The album is streaming in full on the label’s bandcamp. I post a link on a comment, but it’s wainting for moderation, so I will post it again.
        wtcproductions.bandcamp dot com /album/tacent-semitae

  • Wilhelm

    this sounds awesome

  • sir_c

    Wow, the unicorn looks like it received an intense visit by Ron Jeremy.
    Anyway, also the embedded track is a real blast. Sounds like something to keep an eye on in the future. Thanks for the heads-up

  • Diego Molero

    Just finish listening to the embedded track and “Tacent Semitae (Silent Paths)”, both really good songs. Gonna make a kickass playlist with this and the new Ars Moriendi (which I’m loving, it’s great).

    Also, this has nothing to do with the review, but I just came home from buying a new shirt that I wanted since ages ago but couldn’t aford until today. And I don’t have any metalheads friends to show them the shirt, so here is a photo. Needless to say, I’m pretty fucking happy right know.

    • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra


    • Bart the Repairman

      Good choice;)

    • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

      Diego, did you hear Morgoth is playing in Maracay on November 19th?

      • Diego Molero

        What? No. Had no idea! That really is a surprise. Are you going? I’m not that far away (Caracas), but it is a little hard for me to go, since I have no car, no family in Maracay, and is just a week ahead. But I’m going to do anything I can to go, never been to a concert and would love to be there. Tickets aren’t even that expensive.

        • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

          Yes, I’m planning on going. I live in Guacara, not far from Maracay. Add me on whatsapp: 0416-8450868

  • Bart the Repairman

    Why the hell are song titles translated from english to polish?! (Po jaką cholerę tytuły kawałków są tłumaczone z angielskiego na polski?!)

    • iiixf

      ponieważ lasencja na wokalach drze ryja po polsku, przynajmniej w zamieszczonym przy recenzji utworze wokalno-instrumentalnym tworzącym całkiem emperoropodobny elektromontaż artystyczny i tytuły są tłumaczone raczej w drugą stronę (since the singer roars/shrieks in Polish, at least in the embedded track […] and the song titles are translated from Polish INTO English)

  • Juan Manuel Pinto Guerra

    This is the second (very Metal) band reviewed here this week that doesn’t have a page on the Metal Archives.

    • GardensTale

      Metal Archives can go suck it.

    • Sorry about this late reply, but anyway.
      MA is made up by folks like us. Metal-head volunteers that add what they know of and have time for. Often, zines and sites like this discover the lack of updates first, but don’t have the time to do something about it. Besides, adding a band without awareness of basic facts like location, members, year of formation etc is hell.

      With the increasing release-rate, I urge more people to get involved so that shit like that don’t happen too often. It can actually feel a bit complicated and almost bureaucratic at first with all its rules, but once you get the hang of it…

  • This is good stuff.