Ad Inferna seems to be a band that take themselves very seriously. The CD booklet contains pictures with semi-provoking statements such as "Commit Suicide on X Tasy" and "God is nothing More than Me" below them. Come on, guys, it's just music. You can get away with this if you're actually offering something either new or groundbreaking, but "L'Empire Des Sens" is neither. From the repetitive intro, "Magistrale Ouverture" (which might as well have been called "Doused in Pomposity"), the album continues in a style reminiscent of Ancient, but not quite up to that standard. "Vampyric Supremacy" in particular, with its wall-to-wall keyboard carpets, makes the name of aforementioned band spring to mind.

There is only one track that some may call innovative - the album closer, "Aggressive Supremacy". While listening to the CD and writing notes, I jotted down "a load of total crap sounding like it's using a drum computer". I'd like to stick with that description on account of it being spot-on.

Nothing new under the seriously nocturnal black metal sun here, also marred by a production that grants rather too much sonic space to the high part of the aural spectrum. The artwork is aesthetically pleasing, but can't really save the rest.



Written August 2002


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