Review: “All Virtues Ablaze” by Liminal Shroud

“Our second album, All Virtues Ablaze, takes the vision set forth on our debut and executes with greater intensity, song craft and performance. Written and recorded between 2019 and 2021, this album represents and captures a process of rejection, annihilation and regeneration of the self and contemplates the cyclical forces of futility that shape our condition.

Musically, All Virtues Ablaze is a major development on our previous album, taking the emotive atmospherics, searing melodicism and bitter fury found on Through the False Narrows to new heights. We are very proud of the compositional strength and impact of these four songs.  

Lyrically, we delve deeper into the themes of hopelessness and despair, resolve and transformation present on our previous release, sharpened in the perception of emptiness yet with an eye to the vast reaches and sources of solace to be found above, below and around us. Again, the unyielding tides and otherworldly expanses of the coast provide much inspiration. This release is our next statement and beginning. We find our virtue in the blaze.”  

Recorded and mixed by Matt Roach (Synapse, Victory Denied) at Rain City Recorders in Vancouver Canada, Mastered by Dave Otero (Inferi, Archspire) at Flatline Audio in Denver Colorado and adorned by artwork from Justyna Koziczak based in London, “All Virtues Ablaze” by Canadian Black Metal trio Liminal Shroud finds them dividing the better part of 40 minutes of music into four parts. The follow up to “Through the False Narrows” once again sees  Aidan Crossley (Guitar, vocals, piano), Rich Taylor (Bass, vocals) and Drew Davidson (Drums) delivering a deliciously intense slab of atmospheric Death Metal, so dark it consumes your very being. Beginning with the vicious skull battering that is “Hypoxic” which finds Crossley a fearsome beast who produces a scathingly fierce and fiery vocal performance capable of stripping paint from the walls at thirty paces. The lead guitar work has a dark and meloncholic vibe that at times crosses into Post-Hardcore territory, the tsunami of percussive battery a non stop thunderstorm of a backdrop that defies belief. “Mists Along Florencia” finds us starring into the abyss during its expended instrumental introduction before the caustic vocals permeate and the beast rises from the black depths once more. Mesmerising in its dark beauty, it has flavours of recent works by Harakiri For The Sky as it moves forward towards inevitable self immolation. Rather than being a dungeon crawl through the seven depths of hell, Liminal Shroud instead haver a surprising amount of Post-Rock in their Black Metal and continue to evolve those ideas in “Pelagic Voids” with nuanced lead guitars floating angelically over the restless and relentless rhythmic pummelling and there is no hiding from the majesty and epic grandiose feeling they create here which flows like a river into the sea for “The Cleansing Ash“. The melodic meloncholia transcends everything else and drives down the darkness with blinding light and stunningly crafted riffs, each song a huge undertaking that is not only captivating but enthralling [8.5/10]

Track Listing

  1. Hypoxic
  2. Mists Along Florencia
  3. Transmigration I: Pelagic Voids
  4. Transmigration II: The Cleansing Ash

All Virtues Ablaze” by Liminal Shroud is out 5th August 2022 via Willowtip Records with pre-orders available over at bandcamp.

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