Hailing from the cold, unforgiving wastelands of Hollywood, California, Ashen Horde is a two-piece band that strives to embrace a multitude of extreme metal sub-genres, without being bound to any one of them. Drawing influence from metal’s crème de le extreme, from Enslaved and Devin Townsend to Ihsahn and Opeth, Ashen Horde (aka Trevor Portz and Stevie Boiser (Vale of Phath, Inferi)), may have a sound rooted in death and black metal, but can’t truly be called either.
Originally launched as a one-man project in 2013 by writer and multi-instrumentalist Trevor Portz, Ashen Horde has released two albums, as well as several EPs, over the past three years. Beginning with the ambitious Sanguinum Vindicta trilogy, Portz has worked tirelessly to develop a sound that is both challenging and unique.
The band has just completed its third album, Fallen Cathedrals and has signed with Extreme Metal Music/Rockshots Records for its release on CD and vinyl in Europe and North America on March 22nd.
The duo has unleashed the concept album’s first single and video “Profound Darkness”.
The band explains the track:
“We slow things down a bit for this one, it is a song that is much grimmer and dark. The power has gone out across the entire poor part of the city, and the inhabitants—wary and distrusting of their wealthy neighbors—have decided that it must surely be the fault of the rich. Thus, they determine that the peace between the two sides is over and that they must get revenge.”
A concept album in the vein of J.G. Ballard’s dystopian novel High Rise, Fallen Cathedrals explores class warfare and a society’s descent into primitive, warring tribes. Musically, the album expands further on the complexities of the band’s earlier releases, but with even more emphasis on progressive and melodic elements, even incorporating clean vocals for the first time. It will appeal to fans of the more progressive side of extreme metal, from Ihsahn and Borknagar to Opeth and Enslaved.
Portz states: “The forthcoming album, Fallen Cathedrals, is the perfect illustration of what Ashen Horde is all about. Musically, it draws influence from across the metal spectrum. There is hyper speed, blast-beat-fueled black metal that runs alongside pummeling death metal riffs; clean-sung melodic passages juxtaposed against face-melting screams, and headbanging beats intermixed with progressive odd-time signatures.”
1. Parity Lost
2. Profound Darkness
4. The Vanishing
7. Final Ascent
8. Face Of The Enmity
9. Primal (bonus track on CD only)