By: Lord Randall

Enshrouded in its own seemingly self-entwined cloak of mystery, France’s DEATHSPELL OMEGA with 2004’s “Si Monvmentvm Reqvires, Circvmspice” fully embraced the Satanic theology and esotericism it had been toying with previously, both starting the band on a new path and spawning legions of wishful carbon copies in the process. After six years without a full-length, DO returned in 2016, and has kept to its every third-year cycle since, of which “The Long Defeat” is the latest.

Two minutes into opener ‘Enantiodromia’ and it still sounds as if the band’s searching for a song somewhere in the ether. Not that there’s any build or sense of anticipation as their good and well should be when it comes to a band of this stature. Regrettably now over 1/3 of the way through, and still nothing whatsoever to hold my attention.

From 3:55-4:28 of ‘Eadem, sed aliter’ we’re treated to actual music, a theme which seems to repeat a few minutes later in the piece, but it seems almost as if this snatch of song happened against the band’s will, catching them by surprise. Worry not, the twee three (or four) quickly wring any sense of enjoyment out of the remainder of the 9+ minutes, and ‘Sie sind gerichtet!’ fares no better. Haphazard guitar noodling and work behind the drums that even I could pull off – it’s easy when you don’t have to even try for rhythm, or to play along with anyone – are the order of the day throughout 95% of DEATHSPELL OMEGA’s 2022 showing. Oh, and the last tune sounds like a wannabe TRIBULATION song.

Now I’ve always more or less enjoyed the work the trio (or quartet, hard to say with all the secrecy) has produced but have never been so doe-eyed that I couldn’t see when a song or passage disappeared up its own metaphysical ass, so I’ll call it as I see it here. Satan called, and he's pissed. You’re embarrassing the genius behind ‘Black Metal’ and ‘The Number Of The Beast’, so he’d like you to be Christians instead. “The Long Defeat”? At least there’s still some truth in advertising.