Monday, June 14, 2010

The Howling Void - Shadows Over the Cosmos (Solitude Productions 2010)

This very recent release of US based funeral symphonic doom act The Howling Void is one of the most powerful albums that I’ve heard this year in terms of creating an encapsulating ominous and 100% isolationist atmosphere. This is definitely the epitome of the sounds of tragedy and despair, eternal suffering and longing for someone or even death itself. With most of the tracks clocking in at almost fifteen minutes a piece you can be sure that you will have very little difficulty being absorbed into this deserted world of pure despondent emotions, like being deserted in a vast wasteland of nothing, not even a mirage to keep you company.

When something is labeled DOOM, I expect and look forward to this depressive and heavy sound, the sound of your breath shortening from the weight of the burdens of life, the feel of drowning in ones regrets and emotions that amass like an ocean and intend to swallow you whole. On “Shadows Over The Cosmos” you get exactly what the title suggests, there’s no light at the end of the tunnel here as the entire universe is consumed by shadows and sadness. All of us need a break from our groovy and rhythmic doom to take a deep journey into another dimension or universe of gloom and despair at times, especially when looking to unwind after a long week or day and just disappear altogether. This is the perfect soundtrack to embark on that treacherous voyage to, it’ll wash over your consciousness in waves of dark and cold chords of doom.

In terms of sound you can expect something along the lines of Esoteric/Evoken/Ahab/Astral Sleep, in other words a grandiose and ultra heavy sound of abysmal dismay and utter hopelessness coming at you from within the catacombs of absolute suffering. The ultimate in heavy is here and not just present in the sound, but in the feeling as well. The experience created here lies somewhere between the epic, poetic and gripping ones created by the likes of Solitude Aeturnus and an Edgar Allen Poe tale. Highly recommended to fans of: Hallowed Butchery, Ahab, Esoteric, Evoken, Skepticism, My Dying Bride, Officum Triste, and label mates Astral Sleep.

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