Premiere: Void Ritual – Death Is Peace
Void Ritual, Alburquerque’s one-man black metal phenom, is back. Way back in early 2015, we declared multi-instrumentalist Daniel Jackson’s solo act the best unsigned band in New Mexico. Later that year, Celtic Frosty gushed over the single “Nachzehrer.” About a year later, Dan made a guest appearance on Toilet Radio to talk metal and the socio-political landscape, and he hung around for one more year, haunting the place and slinging black metal ectoplasm like a spirit from the black past. It’s safe to say we here at Toilet ov Hell are big fans of Void Ritual, so it’s my distinct honor to bring you a full stream of the brand new record, Death Is Peace. Get in here for the some of the best USBM you’ll hear this year!
What’s enamored us to Void Ritual for all these years is Jackson’s heartfelt passion for his music and his community. Every Void Ritual release sees the artist’s vision expanding; where Holodomor married volcanic blasts to craggy riffs, Spirit from the Black Past dabbled in classic melodies and stirring introspection. The Bashasketh split found Jackson toying with jarring syncopation, only for Ashes to embrace an almost sognametal sense of grandeur. Amazingly, almost impossibly, Death Is Peace unifies these disparate threads into a single, compelling whole.
Over the length of its duration, Death Is Peace leans more into the melodic and atmospheric styles of Spirit from the Black Past and Ashes, but be not afraid that Void Ritual has gone full-blown Cascadian. “Death Is Peace” features some of the most snarling and asynchronous riffs in all of Void Ritual’s discography, and “A Sunless Dawn” is an absolute hammer blast of a track, its visceral leads tearing you limb from limb. Most intriguing, however, is Dan’s continued embrace of folk and progressive elements. A somber, almost spiritual acoustic lead invites us into a place of reflection in “In The Depths” before vicious tremolo lines crash against us like a landslide, and “Given Unto the Water” proclaims Void Ritual’s rightful place as the contender for Wayfarer’s throne of folksy, windswept grandeur.
Simply put, Death Is Peace is Void Ritual’s most complete and fully realized work; Dan’s artistic vision and impeccable talent unite into a deeply rewarding take on black metal that unifies first wave power with second wave riffs and a modern sense of beauty and depth. This is an important release rendered all the better by Dan’s partnership with Ipos Music. All revenue from Death Is Peace will be donated to the Coalition to Stop Violence Against Native Women, so you can feel even better about supporting one of metal’s class acts.
Death Is Peace can be purchased via Ipos Music on Bandcamp here. You can find Void Ritual on Facebook here and check out the killer art by Ivan Belcic below.