Album Review: Ashen Crown – Obsolescence (Self Released)

With the band celebrating coming up to their third year of being together, on the 1st November 2019, Ashen Crown will release their debut album, Obsolescence.

The album, “Obsolescence” relates to the band’s thoughts that things change and over time concepts such as religion, politics and some day to day ideologies will become obsolete. Plus as they grow musically some of the tracks on this album will become obsolete, a metaphor if you will, for their intent of progression and a massive shift in the writing process, leaving behind what once was.

Ste Fowkes of Ashen Crown has said:

With major changes within the band near the end of 2018, we had some time to re-evaluate our plans for pushing things forward. We initially planned to record an EP for release around November 2018, however, with Chris leaving the band we had to put this on hold whilst Mike settled in. We decided unanimously to go with a full-length album drawing a line under the initial period, beginning a new chapter for the band. It felt right to get the current tracks laid down and released, to capture this moment of where we are on our journey in music and move on. Most of the album material was ready, however, there was still a few tracks that needed finishing. Over time these songs have changed lyrically, musically and conceptually, Mike’s fresh perspective was instrumental in finalising the tracks ready to record at Initiate Audio and Media in March 2019. We are immensely proud of what we have created and believe the album has a little something for everyone.

The moment when you realise you’re listening to something special is such a great feeling. That moment when something just cuts through the malaise of metal and demands your attention. With so much music readily available, it makes these moments few and far between yet for Ashen Crown it happens several times throughout their new album, Obsolescence.

This is a special album by a special band, the extreme metal of it all offset by a modern level of groove and technicality. It’s neither one thing or the other, instead drawing from a myriad of styles and influences to deliver a belter of a record.

There isn’t a single track that is found lacking here. Ashen Crown simply know how to deliver crunchy riffing, crushing drum beats, belly-rumbling bass and demonic vocals to perfection. Those moments I referenced before crop up in the latter part of Crimson Sea, where the band drop into near silence and the vocals take on a more subtle and less threatening style. All before erupting into a wicked guitar solo and eventually the heaviest of heavy breakdowns.

Another is the track Right to Rise, a gut-punch of number that is aggression tightly coiled like a spring. When the tension finally snaps, you know it is going to be painful. This is a track I can picture being utter chaos live.

Then there is the filth of Blood Beneath Us. A track that begins with a doom-like tempo before increasing the heaviness to face-melting extremes. The most amazing thing? Just when you think you’ve got a handle on the track, operatic female vocals crop up near the end to add a gothic edge as things slow down. Just so wonderful.

This is such a phenomenal release. Layered as hell, smart and interesting music. Extreme metal can be a bit ‘one-note’ with bands thinking that ‘heavy’ is all you need to do. Watch out all you lazy bands, Ashen Crown are here to dominate.

Ashen Crown – Obsolescence Full Track Listing:

1. Unbroken Faith
2. Crimson Sea
3. Ultimatum
4. Right To Rise
5. Guilty Of Hatred
6. Blood Beneath Us
7. Fall Of Thine Eyes
8. Under The Leaves


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Ashen Crown - Obsolescence (Self Released)
  • 9.5/10
    The Final Score - 9.5/10
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