It has been a good few years since Ex Deo last marched out from Rome. But finally, Ex Deo sally forth across the Rubicon again with their latest offering of Roman history mixed with symphonic death metal to tell the story of one of Rome’s most infamous Emperor’s with ‘The Thirteen Years of Nero’.
One thing is for certain, Ex Deo do not like the rush their releases, each album is a tactical masterclass and naturally, ‘The Thirteen…’ is no different. This is an album which stands tall, choked full of the cut-throat bloodthirsty riffs that the listener will have become well acquainted with are juxtaposed against the baritone symphonies which hack away behind the distortion creating tension and building anxiety through tracks such as ‘Imperator’, ‘The Fiddle & The Fire’ and ‘Britannia 9th at Comuldonum’. As always, this is excellent and Ex Deo as the band give a real sense of how psychotic Nero could be. Maurizio Iacono’s lyrics launch tirade, after tirade giving the listener a feeling that it is them themselves which are up against the wall about to the feel the full fury Emperor Nero. Yet, the plaudits here are not Iacono’s alone to bear as Brittany Hayes of Unleash the Archers delivers a superb vocal part as Queen of the Iceni, Boudicca.
There isn’t anything here that Ex Deo are doing that they haven’t done before and ‘The Thirteen…’ sounds well, just like Ex Deo. Anyone remaining unconvinced about Ex Deo, ‘The Thirteen…’ will hardly be a Damascus moment, but for those already enlisted into the army, then you’ll probably need a crowbar to remove it from your constant rotation.
the full fury of Emperor Nero
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