Album Review: Antipope – Apostle Of Infinite Joy 8.5 (Prog/Black)

Written by Carcassbomb

  • Antipope
  • Apostle Of Infinite Joy
  • Progressive black metal
  • Finland
  • February 21, 2020
  • 8.5/10

Just by the cover I knew I was in for something interesting, it’s a very colorful artwork for a black metal album. There are a lot of genres mixed into the overall sound with a talented, expressive guitarist producing an epic vibe on every track. It has that Finnish melody.

Artwork by Tiina Kaakkuriniemi

As you’d probably expect from the band name, the themes of the album rely heavily on anti christian plots and symbolism. Due to the huge nature of the sound it feels like the devil on ice or some other satanic theatric. It doesn’t get doomy enough to be gothic, it’s a more complex progressive approach to the structure. It’s both grim and a lot of fun. Vocals are top notch, they will be there to pound out verses and pull out unique manipulations for some of the peaks. They’re there when you need them and don’t flood the record gratuitously.

It’s a huge album with 8 full size tracks making up 45 minutes. It never feels like the effort level drops for the duration, it remains stalwart in it’s sound thesis. It has a tone that it keeps while it distorts a consistent framework in unexpected ways. They’ve basically created a playground where only the band intrinsically knows the rules. There’s some great start ups and wind downs that transition the tracks with refrain yet still high in energy.

Antipope: Bandcamp / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

The drumming is really well thought out and feels like an ever burning fire beneath the record. The build up on “0=2” is tight, definitely a highlight. The prog elements are very clear with openers like on “Harbinger Of Dawn” which reminds me a lot of “No Quarter” by Led Zeppelin. This is one of those albums where even the later tracks are still solid and contain new moments of intrigue. It feel likes spending an hour digging the dirt around a gem in the ground to pull it loose. Satisfying process and yield.

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