Consecration – Cinis Review

There are few things in life that get me salivating like Pavlov’s puppy whenever someone rings anything that makes a bell-like noise.1 Asian horror flicks, RPGs with great stories, and immersive Metroidvania games all effortlessly grasp my attention. In terms of metal, the words “doom” and “British” do the trick just fine, and The Land That Brought Us the Peaceville Three has yet another band to lay claim to the crestfallen throne. Norwich’s Consecration have been around the death/doom block since 2010, but Cinis is only their third full-length. Does this take the crown (of sympathy)?

If “The Dweller In the Tumulus” has anything to say about it, the answer would be a tentative “yes,” at least for the first few minutes. Vocalist Daniel Bollans possesses a convincingly deep growl, and guitarists Andy Matthews and Liam Houseago have no problems supplying a rock-solid foundation of powerful riffs and mournful melodies that recall very early Paradise Lost or a chewier Like Gods of the Sun-era My Dying Bride. The right notes connect, seamlessly invoking the right vibes, and making my old furry noggin bop ever so slowly. But as the song lurches on, riffs are repeated, long outstaying their welcome, and boredom rears its ugly, unwelcome towards the song’s final few minutes. This, in itself, isn’t the big problem.

The fact that “The Dweller In the Tumulus” is Cinis‘ best track, however, is. The other eight songs on display suffer from riding on a riff for too long (just about all of them, but especially “Embrace of Perpetual Mourning”), or relying on too much of a good thing, like the heart-tugging intro melody-and-riff combo of penultimate track “Unto the Earth Bethralled,” which is repeated so much during the song’s first half that it’s no longer heart-tugging. The two instrumentals, “A Dying Wish” and closer “In Loving Abandonment,” don’t detract from the album much, but they don’t really add anything, either. And in an odd moment, Benediction‘s Dave Ingram guests on “Ground to Ashes (A Cremulation),” but his voice is mixed in such a way that it’s sitting on top of everything else, drowning out the band and becoming more of a distraction than a benefit.

From a production standpoint, other than Ingram’s squashing of the rest of the band, Cinis sounds fine. I would like Shane Amies’ bass to have more presence, but bass players end up getting the shaft no matter what I say. Otherwise, the guitars are beefy and overdriven enough, the drums hit with the right amount of force, and Bollans’ cavernous voice reverberates convincingly. If the actual songwriting in question would refrain from the overwhelming repetition and would flow better, the end result would be monstrous. When “The Charnel House,” a three-and-a-half minute song, feels like a drag, there are problems.

But Consecration are still a new band, and everyone involved possesses skill and talent. With some stronger songwriting, a generous trimming off of fat, and some time to let things simmer, they could drop a stunner of a doom/death record. Right now, though, Cinis trudges along without much of an imprint. I respect the talent, but perhaps the next time it will connect properly.

Rating: 2.0/5.0
DR: 10 | Format Reviewed: 192 kbps mp3
Label: Redefining Darkness Records
Websites: |
Releases Worldwide: June 17th, 2022

Show 1 footnote

  1. Bells, keys, a cellphone with the right ringtone on it… I’m not a picky cat.
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