Bâ’a – Deus Qui Non Mentitur Review

“I love French black metal, like I love the French language. I have sampled every language, French is my favorite. Fantastic language. Especially to scream with.” – The Merovingian, The Matrix Reloaded

Release date: April 24, 2020. Label: Osmose Productions.
Or at least that’s what he would have said if he had spent less time collecting werewolves and serving orgasm-inducing desserts to random restaurant patrons. But I have to agree with the old boy. French has a unique cadence to it that lends itself well to impassioned oration. Bâ’a is a three-piece black metal group made up of anonymous individuals, and Deus Qui Non Mentitur is their debut album. The Latin title translates roughly to “God Who Never Lies,” and the four songs (plus intro and outro) ebb and flow like soot-laden black fog.

“Titan” is the first real song on the album, immediately introducing the listener to the cavernous production that Bâ’a has employed. Lightning speed tremolos dance around nimble blasts while the vocalist delivers a sermon of rage. Unlike some bands that go for all speed all the time, Bâ’a employs dynamics in both volume and tempo changes to keep the songs immediate in your ears. Pay close attention to the spoken word interlude in longest song and album highlight “Procession” where the band uses wind chimes, choirs, and the ambiance of nature to bring texture and drama to the music.

Deus Qui Non Mentitur is a particular kind of apocalyptic that seems all too fitting in today’s world of fear and isolation. Songs that could feel triumphant with their blend of major mode tremolos interwoven with minor arpeggios instead feel oppressive and resigned. Compare “Des Profondeurs je crie” with “Jormundangr” by Wodensthrone, a band that stylistically shares much in common with Bâ’a. Bâ’a’s song never shines the bright light of nature on the proceedings in the way Wodensthrone or Saor manages. Instead, this music remains murky and dismal, with melodic interludes serving to provide contrast to the furious despair.

Even including the two minutes taken up by the intro and outro tracks, Deus Qui Non Mentitur is only 36 minutes long. This length is, frankly, perfect. The album rips in and roars out, leaving the listener in a mood for more. More bands should take note. Less is often more. In Bâ’a’s case, this goes double, since neither the lyrics nor the identity of the band members is made public. Hopefully the band will continue writing these evocative and angry sermons. I highly recommend you give this debut album a spin.

Posted by Megan Astarael

The Queen of Frozen Forests (blastbeats in the distance intensify)

  1. Glad to see you’re writing for the site again. You have a way of describing music in such a way that I’m able to hear what it sounds like in my head before I’ve actually listened to any tracks.


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