Steffen Kummerer – vocals/guitars
Sebastian Ludwig – guitars
Tobias Ludwig – bass
Seraph – drums
Every once in a while you get something embedded in your head and you can’t get away from it no matter where you go. For me that thing was the latest album from Thulcandra, Ascension Lost. For months I had been seeing their name and the album cover online, just engraining it into my brain that I need to hear this album! Well the more I searched the more I got disappointed. . mostly because I couldn’t find it and it wasn’t going to be out for another few months!! Finally the time had come for me to get my hands on it and it was everything I had hoped for. Now, at this point I had just found out about the band so I was unaware of their previous albums. I did as much back cataloguing as I could, and with every album I found “Under a Frozen Sun” and “Fallen Angel’s Dominion” I got more and more pleased. See for a long time I had been searching for a new name for Black Metal. While they weren’t the first band I came across(Carach Angren, Winterfylleth, etc.) they have this Emperor-esque sound mixed with older Dark Tranquility that just gets your head spinning from the second the album starts, til the moment it ends.
Its no wonder that this happens with Steffen Kummerer behind all this. Some of you may recognize that name as the Guitarist/vocalist of German Tech Death band Obscura. Steffen is a truly talented individual and when it comes to picking his bandmates he is no slacker. Twin brothers Sebastian and Tobias Ludwig round out the string section of the band (as guitarist and bassist respectively) while Seraph annihilates the drums to help bring this album to life. The album kicks off with a slow interlude which progressively builds to that in your face sound that continues throughout in the instant classic “The First Rebellion“. Steffen has a mix of Ihsahn and Dark Tranquility’s Mikael Stanne in his voice throughout the album which really makes for a very unique yet powerful sound. You can really hear it in songs like “Sorrow of the One” and “Deliverance in Sin and Death” which are sure to be fan favorites on the album right alongside the title track “Ascension Lost“.
While Thulcandra are in no way reinventing the Melodic Black/Death Metal genre, they certainly pay great homage to some of the bands that helped pioneer this sound years ago, most notably Dissection. I haven’t been into the Black Metal scene for very long, as I am sure many of the great albums came out before I started listening; however as a music lover with a persuasion of the heavier side, I have come a long way and will give anything a shot once. I give it more of a chance when I notice there is talent within. . . that being said Thulcandra have done something truly amazing here, they used their skills on the instruments they love to play and created this masterpiece that could stand the test of time. So long as the love of music never fades from these guys I see them carrying on and rising to the likes of Emperor, Dark Tranquility and their forefathers in Dissection!
RIYL: Emperor, Dissection, Dark Tranquility, Obscura
Ascension Lost Tracklisting:
1. The First Rebellion
2. Throne of Will
3. Deliverance In Sin and Death
4. Demigod Imprisoned
6. Exalted Resistance
7. The Second Fall
8. Sorrow of the One
9. Ascension Lost
Unreleased „Perishness Around Us“ Demos
11. Perishness Around Us (Bonus Track)
12. Frozen Kingdom (Bonus Track)
13. Dreaming (Bonus Track)
14. Immortality (Bonus Track)
Total runtime: 1:00:51