A vision of Satanic devotion and a mockery against Christianity is a vision that, over the years, has grown deeper and more holistic with its misanthropic outlook about Satan and Lucifer. These Finns return and proudly present their highly anticipated third album ‘In Manus Satanas’.

Aegrus operated their first ten years deep in the underground, launching various demos and the elusive ‘Luciferian Engravings’ in 2011. They then spawned their debut album; ‘Devotion For The Devil’ in 2015 by the French occult label Drakkar Productions. A move between Finnish labels then saw them germinate their EP, ‘Conjuring The Old Echoes’ via Hammer Of Fate, and then their second full length album, ‘Thy Numinous Darkness’ in 2017 via Saturnal Records.

‘In Manus Satanas’ is as dirty and raw as you are likely to find representing the bowels of the black arts. The tracks are vitriolic and engaging. Darkseer Inculta spits out each and every lyric with venom and malice while seeming to drape a cloak of darkness over the composition. The tracks are catchy and powerful while Praestigiator and Lux Tenebris both conjure up a raw and cold atmosphere on the guitars with Serpentifer etching out the beats on the drums as if he is trying to hammer the very soul out of a still twitching fresh cadaver.

As much as individual highlights are difficult to single out due to the majesty and splendour of each offering on this 8 track, the title track ‘In Manus Satanas’ is worthy of individual notoriety due to its complexity and broad horizon. It opens the proceedings with a guitar doodle before launching into all-out war, exhibiting the talents at their greatest. It’s also worth highlighting the midway point of the album, namely ‘At The Altar Of Twilight’, the fact that they have injected this 52 second instrumental piece to offer some slight respite from the beautiful bleakness of its comrades is genius to say the least.

This is a band that have loitered in the shadows for far too long, illuminated only by the burning, flickering flames of the blazing torches held aloft by a few well educated devotes, until now, and now you need to make it your mission to join the growing horde.

(8/10 Phil Pountney)