Aesthethica - Liturgy
Metascore
72

Generally favorable reviews - based on 13 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 13
  2. Negative: 1 out of 13
  1. May 17, 2011
    91
    Stacked against its predecessor, Aesthethica feels less like metal-black, post-, or otherwise--and more like Liturgy. And in this case, that's a great thing.
  2. Jun 16, 2011
    90
    It's black metal for prog fans or math rockers, Liturgy's attention to arrangement and speed the sort of maddeningly precise output nerds like that eat up.
  3. May 16, 2011
    90
    The band's aching for that contradictory limit can be felt quivering in every inch of Aesthetica. It is to their credit that one feels at peace through the record's most violent and cataclysmic moments.
  4. May 16, 2011
    83
    Aesthethica is inventive, alive, and shrieking with more ideas than many bands explore over an entire career.
  5. Dec 9, 2011
    80
    It may come to define or utterly transcend metal; but it doesn't matter because this album is in its own class. Anyone remotely interested in heavy music needs to encounter Aesthethica at least once.
  6. May 16, 2011
    80
    Repurposing tired metal tropes for ecstatic sensory trips, these songs are steel-tipped pointillist portraits of vitality itself.
  7. May 16, 2011
    80
    It's challenging at first, yes, but most importantly, it's inclusive and ultimately uplifting, tossing genre bias aside in favor of several moments of--deal with it, metal sourpusses--pure transcendence.
  8. May 16, 2011
    70
    Aesthethica is jugular-grabbing black metal-startling, complex... and also quite long.
  9. May 16, 2011
    70
    It's sonically assaultive, a riot of full-sprint drumming--by Greg Fox, increasingly this band's central nervous system--and guitar lines with the spasmodic precision of strobe lighting. But aside from the bleached gut-howl of Hunter Hunt-Hendrix, and the dark ritual the band so purposely invokes, the music doesn't fall cleanly within black-metal parameters.
  10. May 16, 2011
    70
    There's no let-up, no pretty acoustic interludes, just full-on musical onslaught.
  11. May 19, 2011
    60
    Entertaining on its own visceral terms, but not wholly convincing.
  12. 50
    Plateaus are boring, flat, and the first act of Aesthethica is precisely that (though lead vocalist Hunter Hunt-Hendrix asserts they're on some higher plane).
  13. May 20, 2011
    20
    The album sounds like Liturgy tried to make a mathcore record, put two and two together and got three. [7 May 2011, p.52]
User Score
8.5

Universal acclaim- based on 4 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 3
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 3
  3. Negative: 0 out of 3
  1. Dec 31, 2011
    9
    A truly singular record. First, the speed and intensity of the musicianship grabs your attention. Second, the elements of their sound: Blast beats, screamed vocals consisting of short lyrical phrases, upper-register dueling guitars, and a fuzz-bass anchor, begin to coalesce into an original, expressive aesthetic. Third, you realize that beneath it all, half of the tracks are actually great SONGS. "Generation", "Tragic Laurel", and my personal favorite, "Glory Bronze", make up the top tier of the cuts here. Aesthethica rips open a hole to a new violent world, then forces you to remain there until the internal logic of the place begins to sink in. By then, though, you don't want to leave.
    P.S. Greg Fox, PLEASE rejoin the band so you guys can someday play "The Colbert Report".
    Full Review »
  2. Jul 8, 2012
    9
    Aesthethica seems to be a huge issue to metal-goers, claiming it "hipster metal".. and mostly because of the way the band dresses. but while they seem to be "hipsters", their music is anything but. it's a force to be reckoned with, paving way for a new subgenre they dub 'transcendental black metal': all the wails and blast beats of black metal merged with a mathcore sensibility and the act of transcendence itself. Full Review »
  3. May 30, 2012
    8
    A good album, but will have trouble finding an audience. The black metal posers will undoubtely dub it "hipster black metal" and the hipsters well...hipsters don't like black metal. Full Review »