The Lights of this World are Blinding by CenturiesRelease date: January 26, 2018
Label: Southern Lord Records
Black metal and hardcore. The two are, seemingly, not synonymous with each other. However, scratch the surface of both genres and you find a lot in common, not least in the raw punk aesthetic shared by Norwegians and New Yorkers alike. In more recent years, artists have been utilising their love for hardcore and injecting this into ferocious, passionate black metal. Bands like Cobalt have been straddling this divide wonderfully. Moving on from a similar template are Centuries. Their album The Lights of this Earth Are Blinding is billed as crust punk/hardcore, but beneath the blast beats and the haunting arpeggios, beats a black metal heart.
It is honestly difficult to pick out any favourite tracks, this album pulses with a vital energy from start to finish. The eponymous intro showcases a band full of vigour. Muscular riffs battle it out with massive rhythms, whilst the vocals are the epitome of modern Hardcore, anguished and raw. All the tracks on The Lights of this Earth Are Blinding are full of this vigour and bristling with life.
The album, as well as being aggressive, is dynamic and diverse. Track two ‘Wooden Hands’ starts off with a slow, acoustic intro, reminiscent of the intro to Bathory’s ‘A Fine Day to Die’. The end of ‘A Bow Across a String’ sounds just like that, whilst on a loop. The result is a Nine Inch Nails style industrial cacophony that builds nicely into the next song.
On this album, Centuries have not just attempted to meld various genres of extreme music, they have created an excellent synthesis of extreme styles. The result is an album that feels like the organic product of a talented band.