Today is the day when Satanath Records (Russia) and Dark Terror Temple (Mexico) will release The Emerald Tablets Of Thoth, the latest album by the US band Akhenaten, whose amalgamation of death and black metal with Eastern melodies and traditional Middle Eastern instrumentation has already proven to be an alluring combination.
The new album — the fourth full-length in Akhenaten’s discography and the first since 2018’s well-received Golden Serpent God — focuses on the themes surrounding the mysteries of the Emerald Tablets and the teachings of Thoth the Atlantean, and it carries forward the collaboration between Colorado-based brothers Jerred and Wyatt Houseman, who also join forces in the symphonic black metal band Helleborus.
Later today you will have the opportunity to listen to the entirety of the new album, but for now we bring you the premiere of a lyric video for the second track in the running order — “Halls of Amenti“.
This new song channels mystery and menace in mesmerizing and marauding ways. Almost immediately, it presents a gripping combination of glimmering, high-flying, ethereal waves, thrusting bass heaviness, bursting drum flurries, savage growls, and raw howls (doubled for extra ferocity).
The oriental texture of the cascading synth melodies grows increasingly pronounced, swaying and swirling with exotic and mystical charisma, accented by ethnic percussive rhythms and maniacal, darting fretwork. But as forecast, there is palpable menace in the music as well, not only from the fangs-bared vocals and the wildness of the fretwork frenzies but also from ominous horn fanfares and cold, groaning low-end currents. And on top of all that, the song gets stuck in the head quite easily.
For those anxious to hear more of the album, below we’ve also included the stream of a previously released track, “A Hybrid of the Gods“.
The Emerald Tablets of Thoth includes guest appearances by Josh Dummer (Buried Realm), Stuart Hetzler (The Boston Molasses Disaster), and Nation Sampino (A Belt Above Black). Satanath and Dark Terror Temple recommend it for fans of Nile, Absu, Melechesh, Septicflesh, and Nokturnal Mortum.
Das Zwei-Mann Projekt aus Manitou Springs, Colorado, die Band oder das Duo, wie jeder es auch bezeichnen mag, besteht aus den Houseman Brüdern und nennt sich Akhenaten. Genau, es geht um Echnaton, einem altägyptischen König (Pharao) der 18. Dynastie. Nach “Incantations Through The Gates of Irkalla” aus dem Jahre 2015, “Golden Serpent God” aus dem Jahre 2018 folgt nun in den nächsten Tagen der dritte Streich namens “The Emerald Tablets Of Thoth” und ich bin gespannt, was mir diesmal der “Pharao” so bietet.
Wenn man sich den Albumtitel näher anschaut findet man Thoth und ich denke, das es sich hier um den ägyptischen Gott des Schreibens und Wissens handelt. Mit “Neferkapta’s Tomb” beginnt die orientalisch dunkle Reise voller Magie, die mich wunderbar in diese Welt eintauchen lässt, gepaart mit dem perfekt gesanglich wechselnd brachialen und es klingt so, als würde Atum – Gott der Schöpfung und des Himmels sich erzürnt und erbost an seine Jünger wenden. Das ist aber reine Fantasie meinerseits und es geht hier ja hier um das Grab von Neferkaptah, einem Prinzen und Wesir aus Ägypten (3200 v. Chr.).
“Halls of Ament” taucht geschwärzt gestählt und dynamisch musikalisch vielseitig in die Hallen des Ament ein und wieder findet das kraftstrotzend Vokalistische gefallen in meinen Ohren, anklang bei mir. Ament, der Totengott selbst empfängt die Toten mit Brot und Wasser am Eingang zur Unterwelt und sein weibliches Gegenstück ist die Göttin Amentet.
“Of Emerald and Alchemy” ist klanglich ruhig, verträumt und instrumental angelegt und schon jetzt habe ich mir nach dem bis hierher gehörten meine Trilogie “die Mumie” zum anschauen bereitgelegt. Oh man, kennt ihr das: man sieht Werbung für genüssliches im Fernsehen und bekommt Appetit darauf. Fas genauso geht es mir hier beim hören. “A Hybrid of the Gods” leitet beginnend musikalisch diesen “Heißhunger” auf filmisches wie “Gods of Egypt” ein. Der Song selbst bietet breite Momente, ist schleppend unterwegs und zum ende hin wird der Gitarre ihre eigene Bühne zusätzlich geboten.
“The Atlantean” verbindet vielerlei Klänge zu einem wunderbar gemeinsamen, untermalt von drohenden Hörnern steigert er sich zunehmend und gibt sich folgend aggressiver in der Spur. “Cult of Kukulkan” ist mit Panflöten und Vogelklängen und der instrumental geruhsam entsprechend sphärischen Atmosphäre gespickt, denn diesmal geht es zu den Mayas, den Pyramiden des Kukulcán, die in der altertümlichen Stadt Chichén Itzá liegen und “The Black Land” lässt mich gesanglich dieses spüren und das Sinnliche und das Besessene gehen in einträchtig Hand in Hand.
“Tabula Smaragdina” lässt 1001 Nacht in meine Räume, in meine Träume und auch hier wird vielerlei miteinander hörerrisch kombiniert. Im übrigen ist die Tabula Smaragdina eine smaragdene Tafel und wird Hermes Trismesgtios zugeschrieben, der die alt-ägyptische Kultur gegründet haben soll. Auf der Tafel befinden sich Verse (ich glaube 15), von denen heute viele esoterische Lehren abgeleitet werden. “Priests of the Jackal” bläst episch, kommt groovend und spielt stimmungsvoll mit der Thematik. Der liegende Anubis und/oder der stehende Upuaut, beides Totengötter und als Schakal abgebildet, wären stolz.
Mit “Fall of the Living Gods” endet diese für mich faszinierende, in Töne gefasste und bebilderte Reise Jahrtausende zurück mit einem abschließenden Klangpaket, was noch einmal alles reinwirft und perfekt umsetzt, sodass eine wunderbare Stimmung zwischen hell und dunkel, gut und böse, Aufstieg und Fall aufgesaugt wird.
Ich hoffe ich habe euch nicht allzu sehr mit geschichtsträchtigem “genervt”, aber wenn ich recherchiere dann viel (ob es immer richtig ist sei dahin gestellt – zwinker), denn diese und anderen vergangene Kulturen und mystische Thematiken stehen ganz oben bei meinen privat geistigen Interessen, nebst der Musik.
Fazit: Beindruckend! Das Duo bietet mir eine brutale Mischung aus Black Metal, Death Metal und Middle Eastern Folk Musik mit jeder Menge kreativem, Screams und Growls, Blastbeats und Gitarrenriffs, epische Klanglandschaften, die nicht hier nur aus der ägyptischen und mesopotamischen Mythologie stammen!
Akhenaten are a death metal band from the US and this is their fourth album.
Akhenaten play a hybrid style of black and death metal that’s been spiced up with Middle Eastern folk influences. The music brings to mind a cross between aspects of bands such as Nile, Melechesh, Arallu, Orphaned Land, Rudra, Septic Flesh, and the like. In other words, bands that use their extreme metal for more than simple brutality.
The Emerald Tablets of Thoth contains 57 minutes of material that Akhenaten use to present their chosen metallic medium. Theirs is a layered approach to songcraft, with musical extras and creative flourishes liberally used to increase the atmospheric and emotive content of the songs. There’s great texture and musical proficiency on display across these ten tracks, and it’s clear that the band know a thing or two about their source material and influences.
The music is well-written and a cut above what your average death metal band gets up to. The tracks are song-based pieces, largely mid-paced, and focus on building atmospheric grandeur and memorable hooks, of which there are many.
Akhenaten’s prominent Middle Eastern influences and instruments are tastefully and intelligently applied to the bare metallic bones of the songs, building them up to more than they would be without them. Entire sections, and sometimes even entire songs, are given over to these non-metal elements, and I have to say that this works very well.
The Emerald Tablets of Thoth is a solid, enjoyable, and well-made album, one that I very much enjoyed listening to.
A recommended listen.
FAVOURITE TRACK: The Black Land. On this song the band’s folk components are especially well-integrated and expand to cinematic scope.
Manitous Springs, Colorado's duo Akhenaten have returned with a new recording which continues their mixture of black, death metal and middle eastern folk music from their previous releases and this is a review of their 2021 album "The Emerald Tablets Of Thoth" which will be released on April 30th as a joint effort between Satanath Records and Dark Terror Temple.
Ritualistic bells and soundscapes start off the album while also introducing elements of middle eastern music onto the album which also mixes in with the heavier sections of the songs. Percussion's can also be heard in some parts of the recording and the vocals also bring in a mixture of black metal screams and death metal growls.
Melodies are also added into some of the guitar riffing while the solos and leads also bring in more of an old school extreme metal style. At times the music also captures an ethnic orientated atmosphere along with some synths also being mixed in with the heavy riffs and one song also introduces clean playing and folk instruments into the music.
A couple of the tracks are also instrumentals along with the music also capturing a very shamanistic atmosphere in some parts of the recording as well as a couple of the songs also being very long and epic in length, clean vocals can also be heard briefly and when the music finally speeds up a small amount of blast beats.
All of the musical instruments also have a very powerful sound to them as well as the songs focusing more on a slow or mid tempo musical direction. The production sounds very professional while the lyrics cover Egyptian, Mesopotamian, Mayan Mythology, Atlantean Magick, Occultism and Alchemy themes.
In my opinion this is another great sounding album from Akhenaten and if you are a fan of black, death metal and middle eastern music, you should check out this recording.
Of all the combinations of different styles throughout metal that I’m always looking for more of, the marriage of death and folk is one that does not happen nearly enough. There are some bands that are able to do it justice, sure, but to come across an act that takes full advantage of what such a sound could possibly be would be to create something that truly cannot be found elsewhere in music. One of the few names that come to my mind of those that are able to execute it well, Akhenaten definitely comes to mind. Their last album was downright massive in every form, and it’s with this forthcoming album that they kept that momentum going brilliantly!
There’s nothing quite like an ancient Egyptian theme done well, and that was just one of the many strengths that Akhenaten’s previous outing, “Golden Serpent God”, had going for it that instantly made it stand out from many of the other releases from that year, and it’s with “The Emerald Tablets of Thoth” that Akhenaten is poised to repeat itself. But what we have here is very much the next step in everything that Akhenaten has been crafting up to this point with every aspect across the board coming together on a higher plane to make this effort a true spectacle to behold! If it was with the previous effort that Akhenaten truly came into their own with their blend of death and folk metal to makes every Egyptian subject they broach somehow even more epic and badass, it is single-handedly with “The Emerald Tablets of Thoth” that these guys show us that they aren’t just some fad that comes around to do just one good effort but, rather, a name that is not destined to fade away anytime soon with the potential to influence future artists very high. The imagination and craftsmanship that permeates every song throughout this album is absolutely staggering right from the beginning as Akhenaten doesn’t waste a single minute or a single note throughout the whole album to deliver us an experience that’s not just an awesome metal performance to fall into, but a cohesive work that presents to us the real glory that such a blend of styles can achieve if it’s put in the hands of the very capable. If Akhenaten is nothing else, they’re capable of bringing forth a wholly badass performance virtually without fault and it’s with “The Emerald Tablets of Thoth” that we get ten overwhelming examples of just that.
Whenever I go to use a prime example of what happens when you masterfully bring together the worlds of death and folk metal to make for a truly beefy work, I now have two works from Akhenaten to present to people, and it’s potentially on this effort that we’ve got a far superior creation. Right until the very end, the undeniable whole of “The Emerald Tablets of Thoth” is poised to become one of the best albums of its kind that we’re to get this year, and I will defend that claim to the fucking grave.
The town Manitou Springs was founded for its natural mineral springs and the town is located at the foot of Pikes Peak. The band Akhenaten is located in Manitou Springs but exploring the vast religions and folk mysteries of Eastern world. The band is Mesopotamian folk/black/death metal band from USA!
Akhenaten named after the heretic monotheism Pharaoh and tenth ruler of the Eighteenth Dynasty of Egypt. The band pushes the boundaries of death and black metal with a great expanse of traditional Middle Eastern instruments. Spear headed by Jerred & Wyatt Houseman aka Hellborus from Manitou Springs, Colorado.
Their last album Golden Serpent God had tremendous reviews and was named 17 of 30 on Loud Wires Best Albums of the Year. The Emerald Tablets Of Thoth is a the next chapter in the on going saga. The album focuses on the themes surrounding the mysteries of the Emerald Tablets and the teachings of Thoth the Atlantean. This album is without question the best and most expensive work from Akhenaten and clocks in close to an hour.
This album includes a guest appearances from Josh Dummer (Buried Realm), Stuart Hetzler (The Boston Molasses Disaster) and Nation Sampino (A Belt Above Black). For fans of Nile, Absu, Melechesh, Septicflesh and Nokturnal Mortum.
US band Akhenaten is out with the album "The Emerald Tablets of Thoth", where they bring their own unique touch to the art of making extreme metal. Many of the songs combines gentler passages of world music that has a distinct Middle Eastern vibe to it with their own brand of massive, monumental extreme metal, with the loud guitars and commanding vocal barks further supplemented by orchestral textures and world music details. Often combining the latter two. Elegant purebred world music oriented songs with and without orchestral textures also appears on occasion, emphasizing the strong and distinct atmosphere of this production. Extreme metal fans with a fascination for sounds, tones and timbres with an Egyptian association in particular should fancy having a go at this production, as well as those who find the combination of world music, orchestral textures and extreme metal generally fascinating.
US based symphonic death metal band Akhenaten releases their fourth full length album, The Emerald Tablets of Thoth. Now, as I've previously said, symphonic metal is not my thing. But, these guys do it differently I think. There's a much more grounded and heavier approach to their sound compared to others of the genre, still keeping to their death metal roots, especially when it comes to vocals and instrumentation.
Speaking of instrumentation, they use a wide variety of different instruments from all across the east as well as the typical guitar, drums, bass you'd find in any metal band. They implement string instruments, flutes and hand drums, and other such folk like instruments to really add to that nice layer of dusty Egyptian mythological atmosphere. They touch upon the topics of the lost esoteric knowledge of the Hermetic Emerald Tablets, an ancient tablet which held the knowledge of Thoth the Atlantean. Much of the album lyrically, would be related around that and the music fits very well with the theme, breaking down into the dark and mysterious folk instruments and mixing it in with the intense death metal instrumentation really adds for a very fun and creative time.
The album is very long as well, but with how each song progressive and grows on its own little journey, you can easily lose track of time and get absorbed into the music. One of the songs that I got lost in was the seventh track The Black Land, an eight minute opus that takes you on a journey through the desert. Starting you out with string instruments and synths creating a thick layer of atmosphere as the hand drums kick in to hurry you along its way into the very oriental style guitar playing. Its a very fun song that you can't help but nod your head to.
All in all I don't think I'll be sticking around the symphonic parts of black or death metal, but it was a very fun and interesting little dive into two albums of the genre. And when listened to Osiris' Meanders A Soul back to back it really creates a very unique musical journey that is connected yet vastly different. Personally, I prefer Akhenaten, but they're both good albums and I recommend giving them both a shot.
Colorado's based duo Akhenaten released via Satanath Records their fourth album, The Emerald Tables Of Thot. This black/death metal duo formed by Wyatt Houseman on vocals and Jerred Houseman on all other instruments dedicate themselves to the mythology and mysticism of ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia. The band's name, Akhenaten, is a tribute to the pharaoh Amenhotep IV who abandoned Egyptian polytheism and adopted the cult of Aten five years after the beginning of his reign. The band blend their black/death metal with Middle Eastern folk music, and as well many folk music instruments are skillfully added to their unique black/death style.
The Emerald Tables Of Toth is impressive, both in terms of musicality and its theme. The skill shown throughout the tracks is captivating, cohesive and makes Akhenaten the masters in this mix of styles. The album consists of ten songs that develop over 57 minutes and have a mysterious atmospheric texture. Usually with a medium rhythm but not losing the aggressiveness showed in the blast beats, guitar riffs and vocals. Wyatt intersperses between the characteristic high-pitched shout of black metal and the growls of death metal. All that becomes an epic soundscape with very intriguing lyrics. Everything that comes from Sumerian and Egyptian mythology has always been part of my passions. Before listening to the album, what made my curiosity sharpen was precisely the theme and art of the album, majestically produced by Wyatt Houseman.
Close your eyes and immerse yourself in the world of an ancient civilization filled with mysteries of life and death with "Neferkapta's Tomb". A track that transports you in time, to a hot and starry night, the fine sand and the night breeze caressing your skin and then the god will speak through Wyatt's incredible vocals, pure perfection. "Of Emerald And Alchemy", "Cult Of Kukulkan", "Tabula Smaragdina" and "Fall Of The Living Gods" are purely instrumental, engaging and dreamlike tracks that unfold majestically. Of these tracks, my favourites are "Tabula Smaragdina" and the final track "Fall Of The Living Gods". This type of composition and instrumental mastery is not common, repetitive or an imitation of Middle Eastern folk music. These tracks tell their own stories and are strategically placed among the others. "A Hybrid Of The Gods", my other favourite track, offers a great blessing to those that enjoy brawn, and the guitar amazingly makes the show. "The Black Land" and "Priests Of The Jackal" close my list of the top tracks of The Emerald Tables Of Toth.
What else to say about a perfect black/death album that dares to involve folk music in such a cohesive and original way? Nothing, because it would be redundant and massive. The Emerald Tables Of Toth is undoubtedly one of the best albums of the genre so far and I can bet that it will be the only one in the year 2021. If you still don't know Akhenaten, I suggest that in addition to this album, you spin the albums, Incantations Through The Gates Of Irkalla (2015) and Golden Serpent God (2018). Akhenaten's work could perfectly compose soundtracks of renowned films of Egyptian and even Sumerian mythology. If you are a fan of Nile, Absu, Melechesh, Septicflesh and Nokturnal Mortum, this album was specially composed for you. Enjoy the epic journey!
Kolejna płyta, której nie mogłem się doczekać!
Już kiedyś prezentowałem wam ten zespół. Amerykański Akhenaten wydał kilka dni temu swoją najlepszą płytę. Już poprzednie robiły wrażenie, szczególnie "Golden Serpent God", ale najnowsza "The Emerald Tablets Of Thoth" jest jeszcze lepsza. Przede wszystkim jest bardzo spójna i słychać, że zespół w końcu dopasował idealnie i właściwie proporcje pomiędzy metalem a muzyką Bliskiego Wschodu. W dodatku, oprócz świetnej muzyki, udało się stworzyć zajebisty klimat. Dla mnie 10/10 i kandydat do najlepszych płyt tego roku.