Codex Omega (Season of Mist) is the tenth album from symphonic Death Metallers SepticFlesh and it is sure to go down as landmark release for the band and perhaps a new creative zenith for a group which has always sought to push themselves and the limits of the genre.
Written in the wake of the often patchy last offering, Titan (also Season Of Mist) this new album sees a newer approach to the songwriting with guitarist Christos Antoniou composing the orchestral elements first and then the band layering everything else on top. This gives the songs a much more grandiose almost cinematic feel and atmosphere.
‘Enemy’ is a track which starts with an opening string section that sounds like a lost piece of score from an Alfred Hitchcock film it’s full of drama and suspense and blends seamlessly with the heaviness and tightness of the guitars. Towards the end a choir can be heard which pushes the song into an even more epic territory.
However, the orchestral tones don’t overpower the record and the band have found a really good balance on Codex Omega. Take the song ‘Third Testament’ which opens with a buzzsaw frenetic riff which has a groove and catchiness not unlike Gojira. This pace is matched in equal measure with another epic chorus.
The real standout star of the album is ‘Dark Art’ a song which is just brimming with everything SepticFlesh are about a simple piano led intro gives way to the heavy guitars it’s a glorious thing but what really sets it apart is the clean singing part of the song from Sotiris Anunnaki which is enveloped by a brass and another brilliant choir section, this song is basically the blueprint and standard which anyone attempting this type of metal will be looking to emulate
This is a haunting, gothic symphonic masterpiece from SepticFlesh an immediately rewarding listen where you are taken along for the ride of a lifetime with dark imagery painted perfectly by the blend of symphony and death metal.
This has all been put together by a band so clever and without doubt now total masters of their craft. SepticFlesh have at last brought together everything they have been trying to achieve up to this point.
Raising the bar is no mean feat, but it’s often kind of expected of band of SepticFlesh’s stature and experience and to everyone else’s benefit they have succeeded with Codex Omega this will go down as one of the best Extreme Metal albums of recent memory, easily up there with 2014’s The Satanist by Behemoth and the new Decapitated record Anticult (both Nuclear Blast)