Sunday 18 June 2023

Codex Serafini - The Imprecation Of Anima (Album Review)

Release Date: June 23rd 2023. Record Label: Riot Season Records. Formats: DD/Vinyl

The Imprecation Of Anima: Tracklisting

1.Manzareck’s Secret

2.Mujer Espiritu

3.I Am Sorrow, I Am Lust 03:02

4.Animus In Decay


The Imprecation Of Anima is the debut album from Psych/Space/Kraut/Drone/Doom Rock collective Codex Serafini who hail from the sunny shores of Brighton, UK. The band released two EP’s back in 2020 and 2021 which showed the band having a keen eye for a different style of Spaced Out Rock. This album has a Spaced Out Ritual Feel even with the heavy dramatic Saxophone making a welcome feel and I’m not the biggest fan of Saxophone being in heavy metal and hard rock albums. However, when used as thrilling and brilliantly well that Codex Serafini performs on this album then I’m fully on board.

Codex Serafini offers four tracks that gives a more Experimental take on the Space/Psych Rock cosmos which fuses BONG inspired slabs of Heavy Droned Out Doom with a KrautRock narrative which expertly comes into focus on the stunning opening track Manzareck’s Secret. Perhaps taking its name with a slight nod to the legendary The Doors Keyboardist Ray Manzarek though I could be totally wrong on that one. 

Manzareck’s Secret is a Progressive Space Rock journey into the more surreal surroundings of the Doom/Psych soundscapes with swirling guitars, intense vocals and melodic jazzy drum beats that make up for a cinematic style of OUT THERE RAWK MUSIC. Fusing sounds from the 60’s and 70’s Psych Rock scene but with a fleeting KrautRock and Stoner based narrative never too far behind. 

Second song Mujer Espiritu offers almost sixteen minutes of Ambient Post-Rock driven sounds which take time to morph into a heavier style of music. The Drone and Kraut aspects of the song allow Codex Serafini to play long drawn out moments of melodic Doom with creepy Keys and Organs offer a darker style of Space Rock. There’s a subtle Middle Eastern flavour to this song which fully comes into effect with the fantastic vocals and chants from the hugely talented and mysterious lead vocalist. I can’t find the name of the band members as they’re a mysterious collective unit. Fusing sounds from bands such as BONG, BORIS, EARTH and SUNN 0))), this record is cautiously slow and pulls no punches with its many different styles of music that accompany this weirdly psychedelic and majestic journey.

Third song I Am Sorrow, I Am Lust is more a straightforward affair with Codex Serafini playing a more riff based style of music though still cautiously weird and left-field. This is more of a Droned Out Punk Rock song with aggressive Psychedelic Freakouts and Jazzy beats being one of the most chaotic and enduring tracks on the album.

Fourth song Animus In Decay is the longest track and most diverse song on the album running past the seventeen minutes mark. I will admit I did struggle to connect this song originally but after a few listens it’s perhaps the standout track on the album. As it’s quite a different song though it starts off as a standard Drone/Doom Rock song with those trippy Middle Eastern flavours adding a more jagged feel to the song. The song is at it’s best towards the later stages when the song becomes more Drone/Kraut based with flashes of epic instrumental jams allowing Codex Serafini to end the album in style.

With this being released by Riot Season Records, The Imprecation Of Anima is a wonderfully different and exciting debut album with rich sounding production values adding a more quality feel throughout the whole album. 

The album isn’t going to be for everyone but if you’re in the mood for a different style of Experimental Drone/Doom then Codex Serafini could be music to your ears.

Words by Steve Howe

Thanks to Riot Season Records and Yeah Go On Then Promotions for the promo.

The Imprecation Of Anima is available to buy on DD/Vinyl via Riot Season Records from Friday June 23rd 2023.


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