From the imposing cover art onwards, Crescent‘s second full-length is a professional piece of work. Well-produced with punch and elegance, The Order Of Amenti is defiant, deftly handled and destructive; the first Egyptian metal band to tour Europe are coming out swinging. The album runs riot with battering, impeccable pomp and grandeur until ‘Beyond The Path Of Amenti’, where a right kicking of an intro acquiesces to brief cleanliness before giving the band a chance to fly an even grander, almost regal flag. By this stage, it’s hard not be pulped from a thoroughly Egyptian beating, and a change of pace is welcome.

Sustaining this sort of warfare for a full hour is a tall order, and with the second half of The Order Of Amenti being a more varied, engaging ride than the first, it’s a shame that the first half is so punishing. The leisurely instrumental of ‘The Twelfth Gate’ comes too late, and the devastating ‘In The Name Of Osiris’; revisits the ominous drone of ‘Sons Of Monthu’, albeit with greater splendour. With this in mind, changing the running order would have made for a more even, less tiring record.

Less scowling than Nile and not as cheeky as Melechesch, Crescent are a bloody good band, and The Order Of Amenti is a powerful record, but such brutal pacing before a wise and measured finale makes it a frustrating listen. Losing two earlier tracks would have made this extremely good; Crescent will have to settle for very.

The Order Of Amenti is out now on Listenable Records.

Words: John Tron Davidson

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