Esogenesi Premiere “Decadimento Astrale” from Self-Titled Debut out Oct. 4

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on August 30th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

ESOGENESI

Milano death-doomers Esogenesi will release their self-titled debut album on Oct. 4 through Transcending Obscurity Records. The four-piece are a relatively new band, having formed in 2016, but as the five-track/39-minute full-length plays out, it becomes increasingly clear they’re doing more with the collection than just getting their feet wet in the style. They’re doing that too, to be sure, but if we’re sticking with the liquid idiom, they’re much more “up to neck” than “wet feet” when it comes to the particular grueling atmosphere that typifies the death-doom aesthetic — that ultra-dark churn marked out by a severe emotional conveyance, a mournfulness that gives the death metal aspects of the sound a that-much-truer resonance. Esogenesi‘s background as players varies, between black metal, hardcore, classical and, presumably, some doom as well, but even as album-closer “Incarnazione Della Conoscenza” hits its crescendo with blastbeating insistence, the commitment to the whole-album ambience remains firm. In other words, though they haven’t done it before, they know what they’re doing.

There’s comfort in that for the present and promise for the future, of course. Esogenesi show quickly what the crux of their first offering will be in the brooding guitar and bass intro of opener “Abominio,” one of three cuts to top nine minutes on the vinyl-ready outing. ESOGENESI ESOGENESISoon double-kick enters, but the tone of patience is already set, and that will prove crucial to both band and listener as “Abominio” unfolds into its morose riff and speedier chug en route to the subsequent “Decadimento Astrale,” which essentially flips the structure to fast-slow instead of slow-fast in terms of its buildup, establishing a fluidity that carries into the standalone guitar of “…Oltregenesi…” — which in another context I’d directly liken to Dylan Carlson — which is joined in its second half by understated drums before it kind of disintegrates into the start of “Esilio Nell’Extramondo,” the penultimate and longest inclusion on Esogenesi at 9:51 and perhaps also the darkest of processions the band here unfurls. A quiet beginning is mirrored in the ambient midsection, but on either side of that is a dirge procession that finds the band — guitarist Davide Roccato bassist Carlo Campanelli, vocalist Jacopo Marinelli and drummer Michele Adami — pushing toward a new level of extremity in aural gruel that, yes, will pick up some speed by the end, but still remains pummeling in its finish in a manner consistent with how they started out. It’s a gorgeous execution of style.

And taken in kind with “Incarnazione Della Conoscenza” as it would be on side B of a vinyl release, it further demonstrates where Esogenesi are coming from in their initial approach to death-doom, which is straightforward at least in the microgenre’s own terms. I wouldn’t be surprised to find them adding keyboard, or strings, or even just more guitar effects to flesh out arrangements as they move forward, but as a flag-planting endeavor, Esogenesi‘s self-titled lays claim to a chunk of space in death-doom and proceeds to make that space its own. The band’s trades between loud and quiet stretches, fast and slow stretches, the interlude vibe in “…Oltregenesi…” and the sharper-edged riffing that caps the pre-apex burst of “Incarnazione Della Conoscenza” — they end on their most extreme push, as noted — all feed together to make an overarching impression of bleakness that is consuming, but still not overwhelming or redundant simply because at under 40 minutes, it doesn’t stick around long enough to be. A certain amount of repetition is fair game, one might argue essential, to what they’re doing, but one of the things Esogenesi get right on their first LP is realizing that it doesn’t need to be 65 minutes long to get its point across, and whether that’s a conscious decision on their part or an instinct and how it worked out with the timing of recording or whatever else, it’s another impulse that will only serve the band well as they seek to follow-up this impressive debut.

Happy today to host the premiere of “Decadimento Astrale” below, which you’ll find followed by more info from the PR wire.

Please enjoy:

Esogenesi, “Decadimento Astrale” official track premiere

Death/doom metal band Esogenesi have concocted a sublime blend that harnesses the power of death metal with the poignancy of doom metal, backed with an able, organic yet powerful sound that the band can call it their own. Even though this is only their debut, the quartet have outdone themselves in creating music with unfathomable depth and emotional poise. The five songs plod along with subtle but effective changes in mood, tempo and groove, and it often becomes imperative to revisit them to catch the brilliant nuances ensconced in the rumbling death metal-spiked parts. This is as good a debut as any to come out in the genre and it only solidifies the band’s place in the increasing death/doom roster of Transcending Obscurity.

Tracklisting –
1. Abominio
2. Decadimento Astrale
3. …Oltregenesi…
4. Esilio Nell’Extramondo
5. Incarnazione Della Conoscenza

Lineup –
Jacopo Marinelli – Vocals
Davide Roccato – Guitars
Carlo Campanelli – Bass
Michele Adami – Drums

Cover art by Korvo
Internal layout and graphics by Luca Brusa

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Warcrab Premiere “Unfurling Wings of Damnation” from Debut LP Damned in Endless Night

Posted in audiObelisk on August 1st, 2019 by JJ Koczan

warcrab

Hail death! Hail Warcrab. Yes, it’s a silly name, but even a cursory investigation on who they are will turn up the fact that the brutalist sludge six-pack come from the UK, where we all know that a silly name is by no means a barrier against awesomeness. Transcending Obscurity Records will issue the Plymouth-based troupe’s debut album, Damned in Endless Night, on Aug. 30, and thereby unfurl 10 tracks and 52 minutes of deathly churn and morose atmosphere, the guitars of Geoff HolmesPaul “Budgie” Garbett and Leigh Jones (not the same Leigh Jones who was in Groan; different guy) leading the way through the Heartwork-esque “Halo of Flies” and “In the Arms of Armageddon” after the intro “Perpetua” as an initial salvo that rounds out with “Blood for the Blood God,” a slower round of punishment that speaks to some of the record’s more doomed aspects but remains dynamic and malleable in its tempo, finishing with energetic chug. Vocalist Martyn Grant has an enviable rasp that is utterly vicious, and with bassist Dave “Guppy” Simmonds and drummer Rich Parker setting the rhythms he follows, Warcrab sound all the more lethal in their execution across the album’s universally nasty span. They’re not the first band in the world to blend death metal and sludge, but their take on the style feels particularly dug in and righteously heinous.

That’s perhaps most true of all on Damned in Endless Night‘s longer songs, the eight-minute “Abyssal Mausoleum” and the 7:34 “Unfurling Wings of Damnation.” Both make their way from grueling riffs to more straight-up death metal fare, but the path they take to do so emphasizes the harsh vision driving their work in the first place, “Abyssal Mausoleum” seeming to pull itself apart before the kick drum signals the shift that will define the song’s second half. The two pieces are divided by the rampaging “Magnetic Fields of Collapse” and the surprisingly swinging “Kraken Arise,” which are the two shortest inclusions on the record — intro “Perpetua” and outro “Damnati” notwithstanding — and are all the more immersive for that ahead of the chanting “Swords,” which rounds out ahead of that finishing solo that is “Damnati.” The underlying impression there is that Warcrab have arranged Damned in Endless Night as a two-sided LP with side A providing the initial burst and side B expanding the context from there — though one could easily argue that begins on side A as well if “Abyssal Mausoleum” closes that out, which I suspect it does.”

Either way, the prevailing sentiment is slow-motion ferocity and while Warcrab aren’t nearly so violent-feeling as some in the sludgy vein, their songs carry a melancholic feel emphasized by Holmes‘ lead guitar that speaks to the UK’s long legacy of emotive doom-making. That too only enriches the overall listening experience, and though Damned in Endless Night makes for a long LP with its 52-minute run, the slog is part of the aesthetic and feels entirely purposeful in that. One might say it’s not for the faint of heart just for its basic foundation in the extreme end of metal and sludge, but the truth is no matter how pummel-prone they might be, Warcrab never lose their expressive sensibility, and the atmosphere of Damned in Endless Night becomes consuming and nightmarish in kind. “Kraken Arise,” indeed.

Below, you can stream the premiere of “Unfurling Wings of Damnation” from Damned in Endless Night. Once again, the album is out Aug. 30. PR wire info follows.

Enjoy:

Monolithic UK death/sludge metal band WARCRAB return with a brand new release of unbelievable heaviness and groove. Carrying on where they last left with their unique blend of down-tuned sludge and ponderous death metal, ‘Damned in Endless Night’ is where they flesh it out and leave no room for doubt on the efficacy of this powerful and cohesive fusion of underground styles. Equipped with three guitarists emphasizing on mostly heaviness, the music is not only soul-crushing but also brilliantly composed and memorable. Each song adds its own value to the album and is irreplaceable and multiple listens, however devastating, will only attest to that fact. This long-awaited full length from the band is arguably the band’s best release to date. The juggernaut is in motion and unstoppable.

Releases August 30, 2019.

Line up –
Martyn Grant – Vocals
Rich Parker – Drums
Paul “Budgie” Garbett – Guitar
Leigh Jones – Guitar
Geoff Holmes – Lead Guitar
Dave “Guppy” Simmonds – Bass

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Chalice of Suffering Premiere “Miss Me, but Let Me Go” from Lost Eternally out April 19

Posted in audiObelisk on March 27th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

Chalice of Suffering

Chalice of Suffering release their second album, Lost Eternally, April 19 on Transcending Obscurity Records. Even before the bagpipes kick in on opening track “In the Mist of Once Was,” the morose spirit of the recording makes itself plain, and the ensuing seven-song/62-minute outing is a duly downerist plunge of Midwestern-style death-doom, rending its melancholy soul in thick tones, dramatic turns and a blend of spoken and growled vocals from frontman John McGovern. Keyboards play a large role, with guitarists Will Maravelas and Nikoley Velev providing, and the steady punctuation of Aaron Lanik‘s kick drum and the low-end murk from bassist Neal Pruett assure that the songs are a due slog to suit their atmosphere of misery. The core Minneapolis-based five-piece welcome a range of guests throughout on cuts like Danny Woe (Woebegone Obscured) on “Emancipation of Pain” and Sahil “The Demonstealer” Makhija of Mumbai’s Demonic Resurrection on the penultimate “Miss Me, But Let Me Go,” and all seem to contribute to the central sense of inward-looking wretchedness that marches outward in dirge form from the beginning of the record and doesn’t let up until the final payoff gallop in closer “Whispers of Madness.”

The gradual unfolding of “Forever Winter” shows some My Dying Bride-style theatricality, but by and large what Chalice of Suffering offer is less concerned with the loss of grace than the root of loss itself. There is something grittier inchalice of suffering lost eternally the guitar tones, rawer in McGovern‘s forward-in-the-mix vocals that even in his spoken parts comes through with a human presence, and especially on the songs where no one else joins in, “Forever Winter,” “In the Mist of Once Was” — Kevin Murphy‘s aforementioned bagpipes notwithstanding — and “Whispers of Madness,” that comes through in forward fashion with a production that seems to take part of its death metal influence from the production as well, not necessarily that it’s rudimentary, but it’s far from the grandiose indulgences one sometimes encounters in the style. Chalice of Suffering thrive in this dirt. The sweeping motion that leads into the centerpiece title-track, a highlight, and subsequent “The Hurt” is somewhat jarring as compared to the crashes of “Miss Me, But Let Me Go” and “Whispers of Madness” that follow, but the hopelessness that seems to endure across the hour-plus of the offering is much more the point of focus, an emotionalism brought to bear not only in McGovern‘s vocals, but the keys, guitar and lurching progressions as well. Slow death, in the tradition thereof.

“Miss Me, But Let Me Go” uses an especially prevalent keyboard line to convey its emotional state, and the raspy, guttural contribution from Demonstealer is a standout even from those of Giovanni Vigliotti on “Lost Eternally” or Justin Buller on “The Hurt.” Accordingly, there’s little letup in atmospheric heft even when the guitars seem to recede in favor of ambient melody, and that stands in well to represent the album as a whole, which as one would expect for a work in its style uses an expressive range while remaining united in its grim, burdened purpose.

I have the pleasure today of hosting the premiere of “Miss Me, But Let Me Go” ahead of the release of Lost Eternally next month. Please find it on the player below, followed by more info from the PR wire on who does what and where.

Enjoy:

Chalice of Suffering, “Miss Me, But Let Me Go” official track premiere

US band CHALICE OF SUFFERING put out a remarkable debut that was very well received the world over and they’ve followed it up with what’s possibly one of the best albums in the doom/death metal style. Where this kind of style goes, it’s more about the emotions than the heaviness, and that’s where this band excels. ‘Lost Eternally’ perfectly encapsulates the grief, the stinging loneliness and its bleak outlook. It’s a well-rounded album that exudes the right feelings and it’s something that’s perfect for this time of the year, while being strangely palpable. The album plods on powerfully despite the weight, showing moments of melodic respite and even contributions from several guest musicians and vocalists to further enhance the proceedings. This is as genuine as it gets right from the underground. Delve into this heart-wrenching slab of doleful, atmospheric death/doom metal music and experience life at its cruelest.

Album line up –
John McGovern – Vocals
Will Maravelas – Guitars/Keyboards
Aaron Lanik – Drums
Nikoley Velev – Guitars/Keys/Drums (on The Hurt, Lost Eternally, Emancipation of Pain)
Neal Pruett – Bass
Kevin Murphy – Bagpipes (on In the Mist of Once Was)

Guest vocals –
Danny Woe of WOEBEGONE OBSCURED (on Emancipation of Pain)
Demonstealer of DEMONIC RESURRECTION (on Miss Me, But Let Me Go with John)
Giovanni Antonio Vigliotti of SOMNENT (on Lost Eternally with John)
Justin Buller of WOLVENGUARD/IN OBLIVION (on The Hurt)

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P.H.O.B.O.S. Premiere “Taqiyah Rhyzom” from Phlogiston Catharsis out Sept. 10

Posted in audiObelisk on September 3rd, 2018 by JJ Koczan

phobos

Parisian acronymic industrialists P.H.O.B.O.S. will release their fourth full-length, Phlogiston Catharsis, Sept. 10 via Transcending Obscurity Records. Following a revamped/expanded lineup that brought guitarist/keyboardist/vocalist Mani Ann-Sitar and bassist/programmer/etc. Magnus Larssen into the group alongside band founder Frédéric Sacri, who started the project in 2000 as a trio and gradually came to be the sole representative of P.H.O.B.O.S.‘ sound, as well as to record their material at his own studio, Sapel Lomor (which in phonetic French is pretty close to “it’s called love,” though I don’t know if that’s what he was going for), and release it through the self-made imprint Megaton Mass Products, the new album brings harsh vitality to a style that’s often staid or cold by nature.

P.H.O.B.O.S. aren’t that. If anything, they’re as molten as the imagery on the album cover, but it’s not the kind of easy-flowing groove-mongering one might expect from the use of that word. This is more like the actual process of melting rock and metal, of turning it into something churning and blistering to the touch. Like the meeting of minds between Satyricon and a doomed-out Godflesh, the eight-track/46-minute Phlogiston Catharsis revels in its assault factor and brutal chaotic wash.

It’s an oppressive and atmospheric work, with programmed beats and sampled noise serving as a bed for opener “Biomorphorror” and the more guitar-driven “Igneous Tephrapotheosis,” which follows, and the later, relatively uptempo “Neurasthen Logorrh,” the pacing of which does nothing to letup the chaotic feel. Consider as well the buzzing tone of the penultimate “Aljannashid,” which is the longest track on Phlogiston Catharsis at just under seven minutes, and its wide and spacious crushing sensibility, like being steamrolled by some large piece of mechanized equipment meant to flatten a four-lane highway in one go. Tension runs high throughout, of course, and the deep-diving ambience of “Zam Alien Canyons” and the forwardphobos Phlogiston Catharsis beats of “Aurora Sulphura” seem to further the sense of automated terror.

Sacri, drawing nearer to the 20-year mark with the band, obviously knows where he wants to be in terms of aesthetics, and if P.H.O.B.O.S. is the execution of that deranged will, its pulsations and anticosmic push speak to a clear vision brought to bear. For all its maddening aspects, Phlogiston Catharsis is striking in its cohesion, and more than just a meld of genres, pitting industrial and doom and black metal against each other in succession and seeing which comes out on top, the album finds P.H.O.B.O.S. bringing otherwise disparate styles together in pieces like the guitar-noise-laden “Taqiyah Rhyzom” and the cavernous finale “Smothered in Scoria” to craft a varied identity able to shift focus from one to the other without losing a grip on its central purpose of expression.

And that expression is resoundingly, unapologetically dark. Phlogiston Catharsis bears its chug and churn as a direct challenge to the listener, and as “Smothered in Scoria” lurches to its post-solo finish of noise wash and atmospheric screaming, it’s made plain that everything P.H.O.B.O.S. do is in service to an idea of the song, of what each song should be and what each song should bring to the collection as a whole. I won’t say it flows smoothly, because it’s not intended to, but if you let it, Phlogiston Catharsis will carry you from its beginning to end.

But it’s a ride not everybody will dare to take, and one imagines that 18 years later, Sacri is just fine with that. So be it. Destructive and willful, Phlogiston Catharsis manifests a striking stylistic nuance, and whether one approaches it from a place of black metal, or sludge, or doom, or electronic music, it’s the kind of release that grabs its audience’s attention and refuses to let go for the duration. If you’re willing to go along with it, the rewards are significant.

You can stream “Taqiyah Rhyzom” from Phlogiston Catharsis now on the player below. More PR wire info follows.

Please enjoy:

P.H.O.B.O.S., “Taqiyah Rhyzom” official track premiere

Dark and hypnotic, P.H.O.B.O.S.’s much awaited full length after their split with Blut Aus Nord and a standalone EP is genre-bending exercise for the French band. ‘Phlogiston Catharsis’ contains eight tracks of highly atmospheric industrial-tinged black/doom metal that are both visceral as well as sonically compulsive. These throbbing, sludgy tunes are atavistic in their heaviness but at the same time forward-thinking in their expression. Taking the best elements of black and doom metal, they concoct a form of music that possibly no other band can claim rights to. Their sound is singular, ominous and game-changing. It’s the soundtrack of impending doom.

Line up –
frederic sacri > distortion / keys / pulse / vox
mani ann-sitar > distortion / keys / vox
magnus larssen > subs / infras / lines / pulse

artwork and layout – Synckop (Deafhaven, Merzbow)

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Lurk Premiere “Proteus Syndrome”; Fringe out Aug. 5

Posted in audiObelisk on July 25th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

lurk

Finnish sludge extremists Lurk release their new album, Fringe, Aug. 5 on Transcending Obscurity. The eight-track outing is the third from Lurk and was originally released by the Tampere-based four-piece digitally in 2016 before being picked up for a proper pressing. It follows behind 2014’s Kaldera and a 2012 self-titled from the band, who mark a decade by making their debut on the Indian imprint and whose attack has never sounded more visceral than it does on Fringe. I’ve already said about the album that they’re likely talking about the “lunatic fringe,” the way-out, or better, way-deep edges where most don’t dare to tread, since that seems to be where Fringe itself is interested in dwelling. With the harsh rasp of Kimmo Koskinen crawling out from beneath the lurch of guitarist Arttu Pulkkinen, bassist Eetu Nurmi and drummer Kalle Nurmi, the atmosphere is dark and punishing but not without an ambient breadth as opener “Ostrakismos” leads the way into an unfolding brutality made ritualistic with the use of an effects-laden alto sax.

Fringe, for all its madness in the chug of “Tale Blade” and the oozing wash of noise that is the subsequent “Reclaim” — Satyricon and Celtic Frost meeting with Neurosis and older Paradise Lost lookinglurk fringe on — is rife with these sonic details. Following the gang-shouted layers of rasp in “Reclaim,” “Elan” closes out side A with an extended building introduction and cleaner vocals — guesting on the song is Aleksi Laakso, also of Totalselfhatred and numerous others — that lead into the album’s most vicious lumbering yet before dropping to near silence and a searing throat-rip pulled directly from Finnish black metal. As side B begins with “Offshoot,” the affect is faster and more death/black than sludge, but the underlying groove is never far, and “Offshoot” seems to be making its way downward as it moves toward “Furrow,” a resumption of plod that remains willfully torturous despite not hitting the five-minute mark. A cleaner section of shouts ignites a call and response of sorts, but the tones surrounding, the crash and the lumber are a tie to the aural cruelty in the tracks surrounding.

As to that, “Nether” answers the how-does-this-not-just-melt chaos of the song before it with an almost stately metallic poise. It’s the shortest track at 3:35, but also perhaps the most straightforward in terms of its metal quotient, working against genre expectations in a way that successfully expands the palette of Fringe overall. It’s only fitting, then, that they should close with their darkest, most utterly miasmic assault. That’s “Proteus Syndrome.” At 7:05, it’s the longest inclusion on Lurk‘s third record, and between its squibbly guitars, its rhythmic nod and its vocal-cord-trashing indecipherability, it both makes for a fitting summary of what’s come before it and pushes further into the depths than anything before it has gone. A post-midpoint drum-dropout leads to a tension of low-end that moves toward resurgence of a riff that’s near-gothic in its theatricality, but repurposed and coated in filth to suit Lurk‘s purposes. They finish with no more kindness than they began, as “Proteus Syndrome” is consumed by a wash of noise that cuts short to leave nothing behind, the arrival of silence clear in its depiction of death and no less resonant or meaningful than the fetid barbarity before it.

Usually when I post a track premiere, I say something like, “enjoy.” I’m not sure that applies here, so:

Be devoured:

Lurk, “Proteus Syndrome” official premiere

Wistful and mysterious, LURK’s music is just as interesting and multi-faceted as their cover artwork. Blending elements of doom, black and death metal into their astounding sludge template, the Finnish band is taking the sound ahead in ways hitherto unheard. Haunting, soaring melodies juxtapose with abrasive low-end riffs without hampering the overall aesthetics. Watch the band take you into a slow, hallucinatory descent towards madness where multiple worlds coalesce and still make sense – that in a nutshell is the music of LURK.

Line up –
Kimmo Koskinen – Vocals
Kalle Nurmi – Drums
Arttu Pulkkinen – Guitar
Eetu Nurmi – Bass

Guest vocals by Aleksi Laakso on Elan
Alto saxophone by Aino Heikkonen on Ostrakismos

Album artwork by Adam Burke (HOODED MENACE, LOSS)
Layout and art direction by Francesco Gemelli (KATATONIA, TOWARDS ATLANTIS LIGHTS)

Lurk on Bandcamp

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Lurk to Release Fringe Aug. 5; Streaming “Reclaim” Now

Posted in Whathaveyou on May 23rd, 2018 by JJ Koczan

lurk

Finnish guttersludge extremists Lurk have set an Aug. 5 issue date for their new album, Fringe, via Transcending Obscurity Records. And call me crazy, but I don’t think they titled the record after that not-X-Files show Fox had on until they could convince X-Files to come back. And while it’s possible, I don’t think it’s the kind dangling from Ozzy‘s jacket either. I’m thinking this is more the “lunatic fringe” kind of fringe. Out there on the edges, blown mind, blown soul, all fucked up and not caring anymore. That kind of fringe.

At least that’s the vibe I get off streaming the track “Reclaim,” which you can hear at the bottom of this post if you’re so inclined. What could almost as easily be marketed as black metal, the track is a push toward extremity of fuckall that nonetheless maintains an underlying groove. It’s not easy listening by any stretch, but making the effort comes with a reward. And, no, I don’t just mean the Adam Burke cover art, though that’s rad as well.

Info from the PR wire:

lurk fringe

LURK (Finland) – ‘Fringe’ Gold LP Box Set / Gold LP / CD Box Set / Digipak CD / Merch / Digital (August 5th, 2018)

Genre – Atmospheric Sludge/Doom Metal
Release Date – August 5th, 2018
Record Label – Transcending Obscurity Records (India)

Wistful and mysterious, LURK’s music is just as interesting and multi-faceted as their cover artwork. Blending elements of doom, black and death metal into their astounding sludge template, the Finnish band is taking the sound ahead in ways hitherto unheard. Haunting, soaring melodies juxtapose with abrasive low-end riffs without hampering the overall aesthetics. Watch the band take you into a slow, hallucinatory descent towards madness where multiple worlds coalesce and still make sense – that in a nutshell is the music of LURK.

Band lineup –
Kimmo Koskinen – Vocals
Kalle Nurmi – Drums
Arttu Pulkkinen – Guitar
Eetu Nurmi – Bass

Guest vocals by Aleksi Laakso on Elan
Alto saxophone by Aino Heikkonen on Ostrakismos

Album artwork by Adam Burke (HOODED MENACE, LOSS)
Layout and art direction by Francesco Gemelli (KATATONIA, TOWARDS ATLANTIS LIGHTS)

Track listing –
1. Ostrakismos
2. Tale Blade
3. Reclaim
4. Elan
5. Offshoot
6. Furrow
7. Nether
8. Proteus Syndrome

https://www.facebook.com/lurkdoom
https://lurkdoom.bandcamp.com/
https://tometal.com/
http://transcendingobscurity.bandcamp.com/

Lurk, Fringe (2018)

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Et Moriemur Premiere “Requiem Aeternam” from Epigrammata

Posted in audiObelisk on March 13th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

et moriemur

Czech death-doomers Et Moriemur mark a decade of existence in 2018 with the March 20 release of their third album, Epigrammata, on Transcending Obscurity Records. Comprised of 10 tracks for a densely-packed 53-minute runtime, it is a record that finds the core lineup of vocalist/keyboardist Zdenek Nevelík, bassist Karel “Kabrio” Kovarík, guitarists Ales Vilingr and Pavel Janouskovec and drummer Michal “Datel” Rak [please note: most of the band members’ names have accent marks that won’t show up when I type them into WordPress; see the lineup list below. No disrespect intended to anyone in the band.] employing a host of guests to flesh out arrangements of cello, violin, trombone, spoken word, guest vocals, trombone, acoustic guitar and choir, adding to the group’s own breadth of craft in songs like “Offertorium,” the piano-laden “Agnus Dei,” and the particularly memorable “Communio,” which with a speedier tempo reminds as much of Satyricon in its swinging verses as its violin-laced atmospheric midsection bleeds melancholy leading to a massive roller of a riff topped with deathly growling. Yeah, it’s kind of like that: full-on beauty in darkness, topped off with Gregorian chanting, multi-linguistic recitations, and a sense of ancient grief being brought to life like a weeping statue given the power of slow, gradual movement.

Patience is a virtue that Et Moriemur display handily throughout Epigrammata, which unfolds in no hurry from “Introitus” into the organ and key-fueledet moriemur epigrammata “Requiem Aeternam,” matching tortured and throaty screams against lower growls against chanting to give the proceedings a religious feel right from the start; or at least the sense of being in conversation with those traditions — the Latin titles doing likewise. “Agnus Dei” and “Dies Irae” follow suit in terms of mood and extremity, but more than the emotional or sonic heft that Et Moriemur elicit, it’s the depth of their arrangements and their mix that impress. To wit, the low growls and chants intertwining on “Dies Irae,” Doom, death and black metal aren’t out of the band’s reach stylistically, and there are moments where those elements are juxtaposed and moments where they all seem to come together as something definitively of Et Moriemur‘s own. Obviously, these moments — I’d count the pairing of “Offertorium”‘s crawling wretchedness and “Communio”‘s more progressively bleak vision among them, but would be remiss to leave 10-minute closer “In Paradisum” out of the discussion — make for some of the strongest on Epigrammata, but there’s something to be said to for the manner in which the juxtaposing of styles, smooth though the transitions like that into acoustic guitar and speech on “Libera Me” are, mirrors the tortured sensibility and mood of the album itself. That is, the form matches the intent, and the mood of Epigrammata becomes conveyed not only in the performance of Et Moriemur and the sundry other parties brought aboard, but in the very construction of the songs themselves.

It would be hard to pick one song to represent the totality of the album. Frankly, I’m not sure you could, but with the release date set for just a week from now, I’m sure the full thing will be streaming in no time, and in the interim, “Requiem Aeternam” functions well in displaying many of the aspects that come into play throughout, as well as some — some — of the Et Moriemur‘s range when it comes to songwriting. Do not necessarily think of it as a sampling of all that the full-length has to offer, so much as a teaser of several of the factors at play throughout.

A quote from the band and PR wire info follows below. Please enjoy:

Et Moriemur, “Requiem Aeternam” official premiere

Et Moriemur on “Requiem Aeternam”:

“Epigrammata represents our attempt to cope with the dying or death of those we loved. To create a solemn and classical atmosphere we used lyrics in ancient Greek (the title itself means epigrams) and in Latin, more precisely from the Mass for the dead – the album follows the typical Requiem structure, i.e. Introitus, Requiem Aeternum, Dies Irae etc. – and of course the traditional, unisono male Gregorian chant.“

In any case we tried not to do a uni-dimensional record. So apart from the inevitable grief there is gratitude as well for having had the chance to share our life with them and hope that they are well – wherever they are.“

ET MORIEMUR are doing things in an exceptional way for their upcoming full length titled ‘Epigrammata’. Delving into the rich European history, imbibing Gregorian chanting and using Latin and ancient Greek to convey their message, the Czech supergroup of sorts with members of bands such as DISSOLVING OF PRODIGY, SELF-HATRED and SILENT SCREAM OF GODLESS ELEGY, have assembled a host of musicians playing cello, violin, trombone among others and have even employed services of a choir to take their expression to another level. They combine influences of death, doom and even a bit of black metal and use their operatic flair to imbue it with a mesmerizing quality. It transcends the perceptions of the death/doom style at present and gloriously brings back forgotten elements to elevate it.

Et Moriemur is:
Zden?k Nev?lík – Vocals, Piano
Aleš Vilingr – Guitar
Pavel Janouškovec – Guitar
Karel Ková?ík – Bass
Michal “Datel” Rak – Drums

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Towards Atlantis Lights Premiere “Alexandria’s Library” from Dust of Aeons

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on February 16th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

Towards Atlantis Lights

You know what happens when you swim toward the lights of Atlantis? You fucking drown. Such would seem to be the overarching perspective from which multinational grief-laden doomers Towards Atlantis Lights are working on their Transcending Obscurity Records debut album, Dust of Aeons. Comprised of four tracks beginning with the utter consumption of the half-hour-long “The Bunker of Life” (immediate points for putting the longest song first), the record is due out March 5 and presents itself as a morose wash of death-doom impulses, part melancholic melody and part extremity of crawl and lurch. Shades of My Dying Bride‘s theatricality and Novembers Doom‘s brutal and downer growling metal make themselves known throughout the four-song/57-minute offering, and though very much of the style, Dust of Aeons successfully revels in its atmosphere and reminds listeners of the resonance this style of doom can hold when so properly executed.

The album pairs two longer songs with two shorter ones. I’d call it two-sided, but the break doesn’t really work that way, with “The Bunker of Life” basically an album unto itself. Even if that track was broken in half for the first of a double-LP, there would still be “Babylon’s Hanging Gardens” (5:57), “Alexandria’s Library” (16:35) and “Greeting Mausolus’ Tomb” (4:23) to account for, and those shorter tracks are more than just interludes. Vocalist/keyboardist Kostas Panagiotou brings as much presence to them as to either of the longer-form pieces, delving into poetry recitation in “Babylon’s Hanging Gardens” as Ivan Zara‘s guitar, Ivan Olivieri‘s drums and Riccardo Veronese‘s bass wait to reemerge from the shadows. But while it might not work as a vinyl in itTowards Atlantis Lights Dust of Aeonss current form without some rearranging, as a linear work it is tied together via a historical thematic and as the title Dust of Aeons might convey, the aesthetic is very much geared toward that sense of conveying something ancient, something lost in time, as well as something being mourned.

That mourning perhaps comes through most of all on “Greeting Mausolus’ Tomb,” which takes out the drums in favor of atmospheric guitar plucking and an overall minimal sensibility, but it’s there even at the heaviest stretches of “The Bunker of Life” as well, whether that’s in a soaring guitar lead or the rumbling low-end lurch beneath a line of piano. Though only about half as long, much the same applies to “Alexandria’s Library,” which is immediately darker but gives up none of the atmospheric reach of its longform companion, keys, vocal harmonies and sustained notes of guitar playing a large role in a break near the midsection which ultimately leads back to the track’s central dirge. At almost exactly 13 minutes in, more deathly chug takes hold and a relatively quick excursion into semi-blasting fare sets up an adrenaline-driven return to the chorus before Towards Atlantis Lights finish quiet and contemplative en route to the album’s shorter closer, weighted in emotion, tone and ambience as everything before it has likewise been.

The theme of loss is palpable throughout Dust of Aeons, with the passage of history presented through an emotional lens that acts as a thread woven between the individual pieces bringing them together as one whole work. And it’s not a minor undertaking by any stretch, but in its entirety really is the best way to experience Towards Atlantis Lights‘ debut album. Clearly they wanted their listeners to drown in its blend of depressive plunge and still be able to see beauty among the ruins before their eyes shut one last time.

I have the pleasure today of hosting “Alexandria’s Library” as a track premiere. Please find it below, followed by more info on the album from the PR wire. Dust of Aeons is available to preorder from the band’s Bandcamp page, linked at the bottom of the post.

Enjoy:

Towards Atlantis Lights, “Alexandria’s Library” official track premiere

Doom metal supergroup TOWARDS ATLANTIS LIGHTS give us a sublime album of heart-wrenching drama emanating from historical events. Members of acclaimed bands like PANTHEIST, APHONIC THRENODY and VOID OF SILENCE weave together a majestic tale brimming with melancholy and emotional strife. Each song is an elegant expression of their dreamlike visions of a world long past. They carry the burden of grief passed down from centuries with utmost grace and lend to the music an unmistakable nostalgic charm that is very much palpable. TOWARDS ATLANTIS LIGHTS have created a masterpiece of epic and atmospheric death/doom metal that is tempered with talent, experience and vision.

Band line up –
Kostas Panagiotou (PANTHEIST, LANDSKAP) – Vocals and keyboards
Riccardo Veronese (APHONIC THRENODY, DEA MARICA, ARRANT SAUDADE) – Bass
Ivan Zara (VOID OF SILENCE) – Guitar
Ivan Olivieri – Drums

Artwork and layout – Francesco Gemelli (KATATONIA, MAYHEM, ABIGOR)

Official release date – March 5th, 2018

Track listing –
1. The Bunker Of Life
2. Babylon’s Hanging Gardens
3. Alexandria’s Library
4. Greeting Mausolus’ Tomb

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