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Rigor Sardonicous : Ego Diligio Vos

That latest album of Rigor Sardonicous is exquisitely groovy, as if the band would play Old-School Death Metal very slowly, achingly slowly…

Formed in 1988, Rigor Sardonicous is one of the most long-lasting acts in extreme Metal but also one of the most loathsome and despised. Releasing albums since 1994 and with what may well be considered their pinnacle with 2004's Principia Sardonica, the project consisting of Glenn Hampton and Jo Fogarazzo is of a very peculiar nature.

Pitch-shifted gurgling vocals similar to Goregrind bands, drum machine programmed with little or no skills, blasting accelerations… to perform the most putrefied Funeral Doom of all. Not one from the casket… too luxurious and classy. This is Funeral Doom from open mass graves, sordid gutters, pits of unspeakable debauchery. Until now, pretty much everything about Rigor Sardonicous was disgusting, as if the simple pleasures of life for these two guys was to leave you feeling nauseated.

This deliquescent kind of magic did work to some extent. This mix between the oddest dISEMBOWELMENT and the murkiest Evoken brought the band many followers. Some genuinely addicted to this worm-infested Doom Metal and also certainly a bigger share that just wanted to be a bit more on the fringe. Still, the feel of amateurism, blatant with the drum programming, and the “specific” crude vocals could make one wonder why such an older band would persevere in their ways. Some nice riffing ideas here and there could certainly not persist forever.

The true potential that most fans anticipated and foresaw on previous RS’ releases has finally been revealed in 2012. Sure, it took the guys some 24 years… but it was worth the damn wait. Ego Diligio Vos really does sound as the quintessential Rigor Sardonicous album. First, they've said goodbye to their annoying electronic blast beats. Second the vocals are no longer pitch-shifted (or at least not so ridiculously), yet they’re still gurgling in their own fine way but they actually sound like vocals. But most importantly, the sound got richer, denser, more organic and last but not least, the songwriting dramatically improved.

Filled with perverse melodies from the morbidly flesh carven intro to the last eviscerating track, Ego Diligio Vos is simply mesmerizing. What was before a mere collection of good ideas has become full-fledged tracks with a deeply sadistic and slow momentum. Try picturing Evoken covering Mortician and Obituary and that’s a fair appreciation of this new record. It is exquisitely groovy, as if Rigor Sardonicous would play Old-School Death Metal very slowly, achingly slowly… They still fill songs with a few breathers in the form of acoustic parts, but it doesn’t feel accidental and ill-placed any longer… their emotional charge even gives Rigor Sardonicous the credibility they were lacking according to most Doom Metal fans.

Basically, the putrid chrysalis that was early Rigor Sardonicous has vomited the most exquisite moth. The metamorphosis is fantastic. What was then interesting but subpar dISEMBOWELMENT has turned into the band that everyone should (re)discover this year. Songs still retains their sick fascination for anything in an advanced state of decomposition but you won’t run away from them like you could have previously done. Instead, you’ll be forever drawn to their fiendish lights, like the moth Rigor Sardonicous has become.

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Reviewer's rating: Unrated


Tracklist :
1. Praevidere Peregrinus
2. Caelum Inferiorum
3. Hilarus Sperablis
4. Adventum Ex Flagrere
5. Nox Noctis Theca Dies
6. Terra De Contemptum
7. Deligio Infinitus

Duration : Approx. 36 minutes

Visit the Rigor Sardonicous bandpage.

Reviewed on 2012-06-28 by Frédéric Cerfvol
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