Sacrificial is the third studio album from Cleveland, Ohio’s ANCIENT VVISDOM. While continuing to push the boundaries of both death rock and neo-folklore alike, the latest offering also retains the memorable simplicity and melodic catchiness present on all previous output. Somehow finding the perfect balance amidst all the best qualities of BLACK SABBATH, METALLICA, and QUICKSAND, songs like “Chaos Will Reign” and “The Devil’s Work” are anthemic to the point where many listeners unwittingly find themselves singing along by the second chorus. Simply put: ANCIENT VVISDOM still know how to write a damned song.
Thematically, Sacrificial delves further into singer Nathan Opposition’s personal ascent into the unanticipated enlightenment of exploring humanity’s universal darkness. Whereas traditional lore dealing with the occult, paganism, and Satan himself tends to be heavy-handed (and often synonymous with a proverbial descent away from any sort of positive self-affirmation), Sacrificial spins a slant wherein “down” becomes “up.” In Opposition’s world, confronting one’s own darkness and humanity’s primordial penchant toward chaos and destructive ritual will ultimately pass each seeker through a threshold unto which deeper knowledge, sage wisdom, and self-realization envelop one’s consciousness.
Musically, Opposition and his brother, Michael the Dark Angel, continue to accomplish what countless musicians frustratingly attempt to conquer in their songwriting: simple, memorable riffs and melodies that stand the test of time. Every song of Sacrificial is hummable and infectious. Like the best practitioners in any field, the brothers make it look and sound easy to the point where everyone listening thinks they can do it (spoiler alert: very few can ever do it). New addition Mitch Keith Morris wastes no time in making his mark on Sacrificial, unifying deep primitive influences and driving hard rock rhythms into the empowering sound that is unmistakably ANCIENT VVISDOM.