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Code - Augur Nox CD (album) cover




Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.78 | 8 ratings

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4 stars "Augur Nox" is the 3rd full-length studio album by Norwegian/English black metal act Code. The album was released through Agonia Records in November 2013. Quite a few lineup changes have taken place since the release of "Resplendent Grotesque (2009)". It´s actually only founding member/main composer/guitarist Aort who are left in the lineup. Lead vocalist Kvohst has left to concentrate on his dark neofolk act Hexvessel and bassist Viper (aka Vicotnik) has left to once again concentrate on Dødheimsgard. Code always seemed more like a project act than a "real" band, but on "Augur Nox" it seems that Aort has assembled what appears to be a permanent lineup with two guitarists, a bassist, a drummer, and a new lead vocalist in Wacian.

Despite the many lineup changes, the music on "Augur Nox" is unmistakably the sound of Code. The dark atmosphere and subtle use of dissonances, the raspy extreme metal vocals, the clean vocals, and the relatively adventurous progressive song structures are all present and accounted for. I think there´s been a slight change in the riffing department though and I suddenly count Enslaved among the musical references (listen to the opening riff in "Garden Chancery" for proof of that), which is an influence I didn´t hear on the two predecessors. There´s something about the drumming style that leads my thoughts in that direction too. Code is not a poor man´s Enslaved by any means though. They have by now forged their own sound and identity. The material on the album is generally very well written and sound inspired. The longer and most progressive tracks like "The Lazarus Cord" and "Harmonies in Cloud" are high quality material packed with great ideas, but that can be said about all tracks on "Augur Nox" (long or short).

While Kvohst is probably one of the most prolific and unique vocalists in extreme metal and therefore always would be difficult to replace, new lead vocalist Wacian actually gives Kvohst a run for his money. Wacian´s clean vocals might not be as unique sounding as Kvohst´s ditto, but they suit the music on "Augur Nox" well and he is both a skilled and passionate vocalist. His raspy black metal styled vocals are fully on par with his predecessor´s and the change on the vocalist spot has actually happened more seamlessly than I had imagined it would.

The sound production is professional, powerful, and clear. The band obviously aim at creating a dark atmosphere, but not at the expence of a professional sound production. "Augur Nox" is a high quality release and a great continuation of Code´s career, which wasn´t necessarily in the cards, when you take into consideration the profiles who have left since the predecessor and a 4 star (80%) rating is well deserved.

UMUR | 4/5 |


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