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Ancient VVisdom - 33

Format: Download
Released: 2017
Label: Argonauta Records
Reviewed By: Jack Mangan
Rating: 7.5/10

I'm not sure why it took me so long to get around to my review for "33," the 2017 release from Ancient VVisdom. Maybe the double "V"s had me confounded. Is it pronounced “Vis,” as in “visigoths?” Or “Wiz,” as in Michael Jackson’s greatest movie? Anyway, this is their fourth album, first for me - - but it’s definitely not my last; I’m inspired to check out their back catalog.


The songs on “33” are extremely reminiscent to modern Metal darlings, Ghost, aka Ghost B.C. - - from the gentle vocals, to the catchy, paradoxically heavy-lite hooks, to the overt Satanism. These guys have been labelled as “Occult Rock,” but this doesn’t come across as shock value or horror movie stuff; it feels like they’re as fervent in their religious beliefs as the purveyors of Christian Rock. . . . Just. . . . Ancient VVisdom are singing “Satan is love,” which you’ll likely never hear in an Amy Grant single. Also, where their increasingly-famous peers bake the keyboards into much of their material, AVV favor acoustic guitar - - as frosting on some songs, and as the whole cake on others.
If you’re looking for a repeat of the cultural zeitgeist moment we saw in Ghost’s ascendancy, well, that’s going to happen here. However, if you’re looking for a set of enjoyable, catchy hard rock songs and aren’t put off by semi-preachy lyrics, then this is worth your time. As I’m typing this, the repetitive hook of “In the Name of Satan“ is stuck in my head. The “33” title track and the little “Summoning” interlude preceding it are also pretty cool.


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