Steps of Descent

With 2008s watershed of superb, high profile releases, a number of lower profile but still excellent releases from the likes of Mitochondrion, Hour Of Penance, Celebrant, Battalion, Hackneyed and Virginia’s H.P Lovecraft obsessed act Cyaegha got somewhat overlooked.

For a debut, Steps of Descent is a confident, under the radar entry into technical death metal, with a definite Morbid Angel lean and plenty of Lovecraftian menace undulating beneath the polished, if slightly clicky, but natural, noodly exterior. The riffs are sharp and precise and divide the fine line between tech over kill, brutality and self indulgence. The vocals are standard death metal screech and roar, and actually not too burly or growly, with a much greater range and variety, making the album slightly more listenable in the long run.

As you’d expect from a tech death metal outfit, the musicianship is top notch from twangy bass play to finite drumming and tight guitar work, with all players performing well. The material itself from blasting opener “Ulthar’s Decree” through the surprising melodic almost Origin like sweeps of “Mask In Flesh”, atmospheric instrumental “Obduction Sapientia” the oddly named closer (at least in the context of the rest of the album) “Fuck Start my Dinner”, the album is everything you’d want from a tech death album without forcing the issue or overdoing it. The Lovecraftian themes are there but not dominant or overbearing (“While Sarnath Lies Desolate”, “Epiphany of R’lyeh”) to where it takes from the essence of the music.

In all, a pretty solid debut from a young band that’s hould to get even better and possibly start elbowing their way into the likes of Decrepit Birth and Severed Savior within the next couple of albums if they stay on track.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
February 3rd, 2009


  1. Commented by: Storm King

    These guys are not only pretty good, they’re from my neck of the woods. I didn’t realize we had that good a death metal band in these parts.

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