When I saw that Trépas was made up of veterans from Québec’s Death Metal scene, specifically Morgue and Outre-Tombe, I fully expected this to be another pulverising death metal bulldozer. How wrong I was, for ‘L’héritage du monde’ is a sublime masterpiece of atmospheric black metal, vitriolic and battering yet brooding and melancholic, and while there are nods to the afore mentioned bands, Trépas carve out a different path.
Wasting no time with frivolous intros, ‘Rivages Sombres’ announces itself with blast beats and battering riffs before the abrasive vocals take control, making a clear statement of intent.
A couple of minutes in, and the aggression subsidies as the pace slows a little allowing emotive melody to come to the fore before a stripped back passage creates an air of introspection. The intensity slowly rebuilds before guttural growls join the fray and the track returns to its former aural onslaught augmented by simple but effective melodies interwoven into the fray.
A bestial roar heralds the arrival of ‘L’aube’ before more controlled melodic BM comes takes the lead. Atmospheric, yet tormented, vocals create a brooding atmosphere conjuring up images of desolate, barren landscapes. The title track continues as vitriolic vocals are spewed forth with venom, and there is a sense of barely controlled aggression which is effectively interspersed with atmospheric interludes creating a brooding sense of malevolence.
‘Charognes’ and ‘Trépas’ blast straight in with galloping rhythms and vehement rage, punctuated once more by calming melodic passages and by this point I had been completely drawn into the album and violent soundscapes it was creating.
The final track ‘Errances’ opens with a peaceful, yet haunting acoustic intro creating an feeling of sadness and loss, and I wondered whether this track was going to be a prolonged outro until the faithful black metal once more erupted shattering the peace.
As you might have gathered, this is a great album. It manages to be aggressive and abrasive while maintaining melody and creating rich atmospheres. I highly recommend this to anyone with even a passing interest in atmospheric extreme metal.
(9/10 Andy Pountney)