Pittsburgh ghosts Deathwhite continue to spread doom and gloom on shadowy ‘Grave Image’

Photo by Dean M. Beattie

Pittsburgh can be a pretty gloomy place, especially in the winter, but I’d imagine there are a lot of places that feel the same way right now. There’s no way to avoid the negativity that’s been in the air for the past few years, and the more time you spend online or around other people, you know that even if we don’t fuck up the 2020 election, it’s a virus that will not have been stamped out.

I cite Pittsburgh because that’s where Deathwhite hail, but I mention the nationwide and even global toxicity because it’s cited in the bio material for their great second record “Grave Image.” Truth is something that barely exists in its true form anymore, as so many people have been hypnotized into believing bullshit and aggressively attacking those who don’t fall for the same scheme. On top of that, there’s serious questions about the survival of our planet, a topic those same people will tell you is a lie and a fraud no matter there being absolutely no sensible reason why anyone would make this up. So, it is with this second record, the follow up to 2017’s “For a Black Tomorrow,” that this shrouded band (they exist in anonymity and protect their identities very tightly) returns, sounding downright dark and morbidly gothic. The singing is even murkier than before, which suits the new material quite well, and the entire band seems to be in mourning for a tomorrow that isn’t realty guaranteed.

“Funeral Ground” starts the album slowly fading in and, once it sets up, gushing all over. The powerful singing pushes through with the call of, “Breathe! Try to reach out,” over the chorus before the song trickles away. “In Eclipse” has guitars stirring and whispery stabs, and singing that borders on crooning, which we mean in a nice way. The track darkens and lets ice form while the chorus trikes back, and the track ends abruptly. “Further from Salvation” unveils shadowy guitars and riffs that drive harder, as the call of, “The shame, it’s too much to bear,” hits a little too close to home. The pace chugs while the drums explore, as the admission, “Salvation is now even farther from me,” brings the song to a sobering end. The title track has guitars liquifying before a power surge strikes, sparking electricity. “No illusion in front of me, this gray image of pestilence,” creates a sorrowful setting as soloing burns hard, leading into cold, unforgiving rains. “Among Us” explodes from the gates with moody singing and chunky playing that leaves bruising. The song plays with light and dark with a strong chorus powering the way and the final moments bleeding into silence.

“Words of Dead Men” has a clean open with the admission, “The darkness is closing in,” before the track turns ashen. The playing is quaking and emotional, feeling solemn as the soloing creates more texture, and the call of, “I have nothing else to cure me now,” ends the song in hopelessness. “No Horizon” rains gently from above, working its way into the mists, and then things start to get a bit more jagged. The tones feel largely morose and slurry as gothy playing dominates before the guitars chew nails again and end the song on a more aggressive note. “Plague of Virtue” is trudging as it establishes an atmospheric ambiance, and the invitation, “Join me to watch the end,” is as much an admission of bleakness as anything on here. The playing kicks up and does damage again as the song ends in a flame that consumes it from the inside. “A Servant” bashes away as it begins, bloodying lips with the declaration, “Harsh light upon me, but I still see.” The guitars really stir, while the vocals are a little grittier here, giving a rougher edge to this cry of desperation. “Return to Silence” concludes the album, starting with a strange passage and hushes singing. The song kicks into gear with a particularly jarring chorus and the admission, “Mercy is now dissolved.” The demeanor softens as the song reaches its end, working its way through mystical haze before fading for good.

No idea if the world and our country can wake up in enough time to inject some sense back into our lives, but if not, Deathwhite have crafted the perfect funeral soundtrack for our demise. “Grave Image” is a powerful statement, a record that should have them in the conversation regarding who is making the dreariest doom metal on this planet, and I mean that as a compliment. Things aren’t over yet, but music like this serves as a reminder that our situation is delicate, and we don’t seem to give a fuck.

For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/deathwhiteofficial

To buy the album (North America), go here: https://shopusa.season-of-mist.com/

Or here: https://shop.season-of-mist.com/

For more on the label, go here: http://www.season-of-mist.com/

PICK OF THE WEEK: After seven years, Obsidian Tongue return with dark, swelling ‘Volume III’

Bookending the week with Rush talk, I sort of realized it had been seven years since I last saw Rush. It felt like it was not that long ago. Maybe a few years. At the same time, so much has happened during that time from jobs changing, to new friends both human and animal coming into our lives, to moving homes. It feels like such a long time and such a short time.

It also had been seven years since we last heard from Maine-based dark metal band Obsidian Tongue, that being 2013’s “A Nest of Ravens in the Throat of Time,” a record that feels like it came out ages ago. But a lot has gone on within the band itself, especially as it comes to Brendan Hayter, the guitarist/vocalist whose run with the band dates back to their 2009 inception. Personal and professional changes can make the time go flying by as you deal with those issues, yet here he is back with drummer Raymond Capizzo (also of Falls of Rauros) for third album “Volume III,” a five-track, 43-minute opus that mixes light and dark, heavy and serene on a collection that captures you and takes you for a ride with the band as they traverse pain and triumph on a record that is nicely portioned and properly quaking through its run.

“Anatkh” is the 14:45-long opener, and it’s the lengthiest track on here, beginning with the music melting in and rich singing from Hayter spreading as an atmosphere is formed. Guitars float amid words that are almost whispery before the song ignites, and the singing turns to wrenching cries. Harsh and light continue to mix as the tempo swells, and Hayter’s vocals switch toggle as the drama builds, and then acoustics are folded into the mix. That swirls around before savage hammering emerges again, soaring in through dreams and coming out ablaze on the other side before gloom disappears in a fiery haze. “Poison Green Dream” has a proggy start that boils before the track opens up, and shrieks escape into the wild. Strong singing bursts over the chorus, driving into creaky speaking and a mystery set before the inevitable eruption that lets guitar melodies sweep. Shrieked cries pummel as the chaos ends in total destruction.

“Return to the Fields of Violet” has guitars stirring and ramping up, shrieks crushing, then clean calls working their way toward the stream. Guitars liquify as pain drips, patterns shift, and Hayter wails, “We’ll cross the threshold as one,” as strong leads cut through, and the track comes to a thundering finish. “Empath” is quiet and solemn while Hayter’s singing spills out, and the music flows elegantly. That peace is short lived as the song rages to life while shrieks sizzle, and the drumming absolutely pummels the senses. The song blisters ahead even as colder waters flow, failing to give relief. The ground freezes over as the power kicks back in, with the playing feeling hearty and emotional, while keys slither and a female voice speaks over the growing tide. Hayter’s shrieks return and leave scars while the track switches from a chilly ambiance to unforgiving fire, leading the track comes to its massive finish. “Coda – Child in Ice” ends the record peacefully, a quick outro instrumental built with soft keys, gentle echoes, and your heart being impacted as the music drains to its resting place.

We waited seven long years before we heard from Obsidian Tongue again, but it was worth it considering the impactful return that is “Volume III.” Hayter and Capizzo manage to crawl inside your psyche and leave you heaving and emotionally exhausted after spending time with this creation. This band’s presence is a vital one for all of those who appreciate music they practically can live inside of, and Obsidian Tongue always have the welcome mat rolled out in their part of the woods, ready to let you take the harrowing journey along with them.

For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/obsidiantongueband/

To buy the album, go here: https://shop.bindrunerecordings.com/

For more on the label, go here: https://bindrunerecordings.com/

Doom devastators Body Void, returning Keeper team up for destruction on crushing split

I grew up watching old Godzilla movies when I was a kid on a local channel that played weird movies in the afternoon on weekends. I was instantly drawn in by our gigantic hero doing battle with other monsters just as massive as they laid waste to the cities and bodies of water in which they tangled. How could you take your eyes off the screen?

Those old films went through my head as I took on the new split effort pitting Body Void and Keeper against each other on a three-track release you can grab in a few different forms. OK, so they’re not really fighting one another, but the music each band unleashes on this collection feels like there are titanic clashes going on, and the winner is you, the listener. We’ve visited with Body Void before, the Bay Area trio—Will Ryan (guitars/vocals), Parker Ryan (bass), Eddy Holgerson (drums)—that we heard from last year on thunderous, sobering EP “You Will Know the Fear You Forced Upon Us.” Oh, and if you get a chance, see them live. They’re devastating. While California’s Keeper returns with their first new music in five years. The last time we heard from them, it was on another split in 2015, that time with Old Witch, and they’re now operating as a duo—Jacob Lee (guitar, bass vocals) and Penny Keats (guitars, drums, vocals)—sounding as formidable as ever.

“Androgyne” begins Body Void’s section with drums marching solidly and feedback beginning to sprawl before the hellish pounding begins to take off. It’s insane to say this about a heavy metal band, but this band is earthquaking as fuck all the time, and this track doesn’t skimp on the ferocity. Will Ryan’s harsh wails strike as the music sludges along forcefully, feeling like smothering torture, as the music scrapes wounds, and aggressive pounding continues to unload. The shrieks go off and peel paint off the walls as muddy turbulence shakes guts, and the band completely destroys everything in front of it, slowing into a death march. The terrifying cries pummel again as the band unloads a final battering that leaves a gigantic crater in the earth.

“Trial and Error” kicks off Keeper’s contributions with horrifying howls and a black metal feel before the pace utterly smears, pummeling everything in place. Growls poke at open wounds while misery spills in buckets, as the tempo drubs, and the vocals continue to lay waste. Gloom rises and pummels before misery spreads, and you’re mentally defaced before the song bleeds into “Twenty” that simmers in feedback as the morose storming keeps darkening the scene. “Praise be to paradise,” is wailed amid a soup of severe doom and shrieks that mar skin, while the panic continues to increase. “Praise be to the misguiding path leading onward,” as thick black waves lap the shore, and the feedback erodes the track’s bones.

These two bands are nicely matched and deliver a split effort that batters you from the first moment to the last. Every second of this is punishing and does damage both physically and mentally, which you won’t mind sustaining once this thing’s over. It’s great to hear Body Void still destroying planets, and having Keeper back in our lives is a very welcome thing.

For more on Body Void, go here: https://www.facebook.com/bodyvoid

For more on Keeper, go here: https://www.facebook.com/keeperdoom/

To buy the album, go here: https://tridroid.bandcamp.com/album/body-void-keeper-split

Or here: https://romannumeralrecords.bandcamp.com/album/body-void-keeper-split-lp

For more on the label, go here: https://www.facebook.com/tridroidrecords

And here: https://www.romannumeralrecords.com/

Turkish black metal trio Zifir unleash assault on religious torment with ‘Demoniac Ethics’

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, but organized religion kind of sucks and has led to a lot of death, misery, abuse, psychological scars, and pain. Yet, people go to a building each week, give their money, sing their songs, then walk out and are complete assholes to each other and support ideas that strip freedoms from other people. It can’t end soon enough!

When I was growing up locked into my own Catholic mental prison, warming up to bands that set fire to religious dogma always made me fear for my eternal soul. Now, I’m pretty much inviting that shit. So, it is with Istanbul-based black metal band Zifir’s new album “Demoniac Ethics,” their fourth, that I settled in for another assault on organized religion from a band tired of watching its ill effects on humanity. Yeah, I know this doesn’t mean every person who practices their faith is a fool and a miscreant. Hardly. It’s the institution of so many that are under fire, and Zifir unload with some gothically inspired, creatively immersive music that can leaves chills even after your skin is scorched. It’s the first in three years for the band—OnurÖnok (vocals, guitar, bass), Ilgar (bass), Nursuz (drums)—that loads their art with a tidal wave of emotion and turmoil.

“Sûr” is a quick intro piece where the music begins to bubble, and strange voices emerge, leading into “Chants for Execution” that lets loose melody that smooshes you and leaves a blood stain behind. Vicious growls and hypnotic group singing push their way in, grappling in the fog before the track bursts and unleashes death. The track then sends shrapnel flying, ending with a crushing salvo. “Still Reigning” has warbled singing and a thick gothy feel, while strange reverberations float, and you’re led into a mist, where you’re pounded. Coldness then sinks in as the track finds its way to a mind-altering end. “Empire of Worms” churns as the music rains down in sheets, rupturing and going for the lungs. At times, your head can feel locked in the atmosphere while the band starts fires around you, as creaky voices cry out, monstrous growls reign, and the track ends in a furious storm. “Gökyüzü Karanlık” is the first of two interludes back to back, as this passage has garbled words, numbing music, and voices that sound like they’re leading you into the woods.

“An Eerie Moment” is the second as guitars trip, strange speaking emerges, and weirdness takes us right into “Chaos Clouds” where things change back to utter blackness in a hurry. A channeled pace and bizarre voices start you feeling like something isn’t right, and before you can get a grip, the song grabs you in its clutches, building an ominous fire that isn’t extinguished until you’re forced to face it. “Spirit of Goats” has guitars launching into the skies as howled growls do their damage, and the leads splinter. The music gets a few added doses of color, as the band defies convention, leading to a spiraling finish. “A Bleak Portrait” starts with winds blowing and more chants crawling toward you before eerie tones take over, and things swell into a panic. The pace calms itself a bit before echoed calls fire away at you, and the track fades into the horizon. “Ephemeral Idols” gets off to a speedy start with growls hammering away and the track looping boundlessly. The playing sheds more blood as the drumming punishes, then a black path is carved into your soul as the final moments melt steel. “Insects as Messengers” ends the record as guitars rise up, and an eerie blackness moves like a dark cloud full of pestilence. The growls lurch, bringing acid from the stomach, while the pace is torn open, exposing the guts, and the final elements of filth are burned away for good.

Zifir’s anger and disgust with religious superpowers are easy to understand when we see the hell people have gone through at the clutches of these massive entities. “Demoniac Ethics” works to fire back against all of that, offering a torch in the night and war hammer at their side. On top of that, the music is stirring and compelling, a black metal release that manages to create its own spirit and not bow down to whatever everyone else is doing.

For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/zifirofficial

To buy the album, go here: https://duplicaterecords.bandcamp.com/album/demoniac-ethics

For more on the label, go here: http://www.duplicate-records.com/

Danish death dealers Konvent revel in cold doom on crushing debut album ‘Puritan Masochism’

While it’s a little early in the year to already to start slinging mud at 2020, let’s think of this past weekend with a rock legend dying and two all-time great wrestlers passing away. Then this ridiculous Iran shit. I’m already sick of this year, and we’re barely three weeks into it. So, might as well revel in some music that goes along with it all.

Danish doom-death quartet Konvent are here with their mighty debut record “Puritan Masochism” that basks in the terror and filth that the Peaceville 3 and their many descendants conjured over the ages. It’s a solid nine-track, 48-minute bruiser that punishes you at a steady pace throughout its run and leaves your chest bruised and heaving. There isn’t a ton of variety on the album, as most of this chugs in the same tempo and delivers bone-grinding chugging that addresses all of your needs to feel miserable and sore. But it doesn’t really need to add different colors and textures because that doesn’t seem to be the point. The band—vocalist Rikke Emilie List, guitarist Sara Helena Nørregaard, bassist Heidi Withington Brink, drummer Julie Simonsen—piles it on, delivers it expertly, and smothers any hope you have to feel better about your surroundings.

The title track gets things started as riffs rain down, the growls boil in the song’s guts, and calculated death is set free, mauling and brutalizing. The guitars spiral and penetrate as List wails, “The spirit slowly dies,” as the cut follows suit. “The Eye” unleashes guitars that team with the misery-inducing growls to scrape away at your flesh. The punishment is doled out slowly as melodies surge like waves, the cries split over the top, and the track comes to a sudden end. “Trust” crushes wills while the growls curdle, and the guitars snake through the water. The pace turns hypnotic in spots, as your mind submits to its will, while the guitars work through blood, and heavy growls deal the final blows. “World of Gone” brings punchy guitars and vicious growls churning. The guitars work is strong and pushes the pace, while the body of the song is pulled into a war zone as paths are beaten with might, and the song bleeds out.

“Bridge” begins with mournful guitars spilling before doomy sludging takes over, and the pace causes your mind to spin. Growls chew at guts as the song brings on one of its few examples of speed, causing havoc before the track returns to slower forms of violence that are just as impactful. Thorny, throaty growls lead the way as the track ends in pain. “Waste” features Tue Krebs Roikjer of Morild and introduces sooty bass work and sludgy riffs that begin suffocating you. The guitar work catches you in a whirlwind and creates vertigo, while the assault keeps treading mud, battering you relentlessly until the track fades. “Idle Hands” has an awesome riff that kicks things off before the playing batters, and the growls add to the animosity. The playing aims to break bones, practically doing so before everything goes up in smoke. “Ropes Pt. I” spreads mystical fog, continuing to bloody the path the band has been on for the entire record. Cleaner guitars enter and trick the mind before trancey playing captures you and pushes you into the frost, where closer “Ropes Pt. II” awaits. Shriekier growls grind at the flesh as the tempo shifts from dark to stormy as guitars light the way. The growls smear blood as the brutality is amplified, letting the aggression simmer under the surface as the song slowly turns to ash.

Five years after forming, Konvent have delivered a devastating, strong debut record that helps them make an early dent for themselves and also gives them plenty on which to keep growing. “Puritan Masochism” wallows in death and doom, and you aren’t given a chance to hit the surface for fresh air, because they always pull you back into the muck. It’s dour music for sour times, and Konvent hopefully have years to come to leave us feeling utterly miserable but happy about it.

For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/konventband

To buy the album (U.S.), go here: https://www.napalmrecordsamerica.com/store/

Or here (International): https://napalmrecords.com/konvent

For more on the label, go here: https://napalmrecords.com/

RIP Neil Peart, a man whose words meant as much to me as his otherwordly drumming

Photo by Jesse Grant/Getty Images

A friend texted me in the middle of work Friday afternoon. Neil Peart was dead. I went outside and just walked around. How was this possible? I didn’t know there was anything wrong. That’s not a surprise, because Rush was a band that didn’t jam all their personal details into social media. His passing from brain cancer felt like it came out of nowhere, but obviously he and his family and friends had been suffering for a while.

I’m not a drummer. Never was, never will be. Yet I still followed Peart everywhere he went for at least the past quarter century. Not literally or physically. I absorbed every bit of his music with Rush, consumed every word he wrote, was able to bask in his greatness live, and he felt like a noble elder whose words and ways I could follow. Yeah, Geddy Lee sang those words. Alex Lifeson brought more power to these songs. But Rush, as a body and spirit, was Peart. The guy who wasn’t even an original member. He joined after the band’s self-titled debut, a good record that contained all-time classic “Working Man” that helped the Canadian band find favor among working towns such as mine. He replaced John Rutsey right before a U.S. tour, and that first show? Right here in Pittsburgh at the Civic Arena in August of 1974, a month before I was born. Maybe Rush was in my DNA before I knew it.

Peart’s drumming is a thing of legend. His solos were so wonderfully self-indulgent that you never thought he was full of himself. He just loved what he did, and he was a goddamn space wizard at it. I also fell in love with his words and the songs he helped create. Words that came to define who I am. A little background on my fandom, not that it matters. I heard all the Rush hits on local rock radio institution WDVE. Also, being a huge wrestling fan, I knew “Tom Sawyer” from when Kerry Von Erich would come to the ring on World Class Championship Wrestling shows. The first song I remember really being aware of besides that one was “Time Stand Still” because I saw the video at my friend Jason’s house on MTV during a summer barbecue. But they didn’t spill into my blood until my friend Nick in high school kept pushing them on me. So, I bought “Presto.” Then I bought “Roll the Bones.” Then “Dreamline” woke me up. Then I finally saw them live April 20, 1994, at the fallen Civic Arena. They fittingly opened with “Dreamline,” they went into “The Spirit of the Radio,” then into personal favorite “The Analog Kid,” and then I was converted religiously, wholly and fully. Genuflected before their altar. I never left, despite personal crises, existential chaos, what have you.

Back to Peart. People laugh at his sci-fi craziness, but you know, that is also what hooked me. The priests of the Temple of Syrinx. All the planets of the Solar Federation. Dining on honeydew. I loved it all. Still do. But his words went so far beyond that. He seemed to understand the weird shit about who I am and my nerdiness and my issues that no one else did. I was able to escape in their music with an implicit message that you are who you are, and if you’re good and passionate, that’s OK. Don’t hide. Don’t apologize. The song “The Pass” from “Presto” got me through depression, pain, misery, and so much more when I couldn’t find answers. Or friends. These songs and words were what I needed, and it got me through. All the while, I bought every one of their records and attended their live shows, my last two coming at Consol Energy Center (it’s now PPG Paints Arena), the building across the street from the Civic Arena’s old ghost.

The last time I ever saw Rush and shared oxygen with Peart was Sept. 11, 2012, the Clockwork Angels Tour, a show that comprised one set of great deep cuts, the second a front-to-back playing of their latest album. That record is a gem. It was a perfect way to end their career (which no one realized at the time) and conclude my live relationship with one of my favorite bands of all time. It was a night I’ll never forget, them ending with three parts of “2112,” the last live music from Rush I’d ever see. The last time I’d ever see Geddy, Alex, and Neil live. A night to treasure. And I do.

Peart passing was a gut wrencher. The man who lost his wife and daughter within 10 months, who rode the country on motorcycle to mourn, only to come back with “Snakes and Arrows,” a strong record that bled with his passion, mourning, and will to survive, himself passed. It felt like he deserved more from the universe. He should have more time with his wife Carrie (he married her on my birthday in 2000) and daughter Olivia. He should be able to keep improving his ridiculous game that he always tried to level up. He should be able to decide if, after his daughter grew up and moved out, he wanted to ride with the boys again. But life is unfair. And a great man was left to suffer. And die. And now we all hurt. That sounds ridiculous because I cannot image what Carrie, Olivia, Geddy, and Alex are feeling. It has to be indescribable. But it hurts, man. A man who I looked up to as a hero (which flies in the face of “Nobody’s Hero,” a song he wrote that I’m not sure enough people appreciate) is gone. I still can’t explain what this means to me.

With Peart passing, part of me is over. This means Rush has passed. This means a person whose words helped me navigate life is gone. I don’t know that another musician will come along in my lifetime and have the same impact. But I appreciate that Peart had such a pivotal part in my life. He was a mentor and a leader and a torch in the night. Politics aside. He always seemed like a good and generous man. He seemed like he cared for his craft and wanted to be genuine. “All this machinery making modern music, can still be open hearted.” It still resonates. And so does he. We never will have another Neil Peart again in our existence. But if there are people who followed his words and examples, maybe he will have disciples. Hopefully music can be “not so coldly charted, it’s really just a question of your honesty.” And his never will be questioned. Thank you, Neil Peart. You’ll never understand what you gave to me.

PICK OF THE WEEK: Unreqvited look back on past pain, anxiety on cosmic ‘Mosaic II: la déteste…’

Each new year paves the way for us to regenerate and carve new paths in our lives, trying to make good for some of our past misfortunes. It’s silly in a way, because what’s so different about Jan. 1 that sets it apart from Dec. 31? Yet people use that as motivation to put themselves in new situations that stand to improve the 12 months previous to the current one.

The mysterious artist behind Unreqvited (he goes by 鬼 but also answers to “ghost”) looked back at 2018’s “Mosaic I:  l’amour et l’ardeur,” a creation where he reflected on his joy, euphoria, and creative bursts he felt at that time and decided to flip the coin over. That results in “Mosaic II: la déteste et la détresse,” an album that reflects on times that were not as positive, rolling in his misery, anxiety, and pain, making this one of his most painful recordings to date. Yet, if you take a close listen, there also are reflective, solemn, and even dreamlike passages that can make you want to float off and simmer in the sensations, almost as if you’re being soothed. But you’re not, and darkness is around each fold, and if you’re lulled into peace, don’t be surprised if you’re jarred by the dagger.

“Nightfall” starts quietly and calmly as a gloomy, proggy sequence opens, flowing into the murk. Cries are buried in the background, spreading as guitars begin chugging, and melodies spill onto the ground. The playing cascades as synth clouds settle overhead, bringing on a frost, while the music trickles into the fog and away. “Wasteland” has sounds hovering as the guitars come to life, and fantastical playing sets the stage and gets inside your head. The music soars and has regality to it as gothy strains rain down, mysteriously slipping into cold waters while glowing leads burn in the night. That leads to a strange bit of calm before waves ignite, with howls barreling behind and chilling keys spilling into a burst of wild winds. “Pale” has similar DNA as keys simmer, slowly hanging in the atmosphere, before melodies yawn and finally bleed. Guitars begin to snake through the terrain as the playing swirls and enraptures, stimulating deep thought, while the back end has liquid keys forming a solid block of ice.

“Disorder” has an elegant opening, feeling cool and jazzy, as if you’re blurring into the dusk sky, while the cries bubble in the haze. Keys awaken and glimmer, trampling over everything, as the mood thickens, and wild howls beckon behind it all. The tempo picks up from there, mixing with folkish dream states, taking you on a cosmic path that charges, splits, and splinters apart. The final three tracks are woven together starting with “Transience I – The Ambivalent” that has strange noise forming a light storm, situating above you and beginning to release light precipitation. The senses are beginning to numb as an alien mist coats your face and brings you into “Transience II – The Gentle Void” where keys plink like ice pellets. The light slowly rises and glows, making you shield your eyes, while it feels like you’ve entered deep slumber, where hidden messages are shifted into your subconsciousness. It feels like a path from which you won’t return, working out of your mind toward closer “Transience III – The Static” that has spacey quivers and synth blankets. The guitars return and lurch, adding an ominous tone to a hypnotic trance, as harshness rears its head here and there. But then, an ambient flood overtakes you, covering you in waves and dragging you out to the middle of the sea.

The music that plays out on “Mosaic II: la déteste et la détresse” is both unlike anything Unreqvited ever released and also an obvious part of the project’s overall DNA. It’s a fascinating listen, and I’ll admit I needed a few listens before everything made sense to me, which ultimately it did. It’s a record that challenges your ideas of what you think is heavy music and unquestioned pain, meaning it doesn’t always look and sound the way you expect.

For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/unreqvited/

To buy the album, go here: https://prophecy.lnk.to/unreqvited-disquiet-mosaic-sylvaine-split

For more on the label, go here: https://en.prophecy.de/