Robert Eggplant Leads Us On A Musical Excursion With Plenty Of Acoustic Guitar And Field Recordings On ‘Dog Island’

Robert Eggplant is one of those artists that certainly has an unmistakable sound. Although the base of his work is ambient, there is a particular abstract design to his albums that result in a Dark Ambient, experimental conglomerate that is gloomy, nostalgic and full of neutral colors. On his stunning fourth album, ‘Dog Island ‘, he takes field recordings, acoustic guitar effects and ominous loops to another level. Fifteen obscure tracks that takes up a better part of eighty minutes, set a minimalistic scenery that’s perfect for a dreary afternoon. So, light a few candles, turn down the lights and prepare to meditate for the course of these gripping tracks.

The album lead off track, “Witanic Path” commences with a humming drone noise that resides far off in the distance. The soothing texture of rain drops present a darkened day and when the strumming guitar loops hit, there is a sense of calming amazement that penetrates the air. Anytime an album showcases the sounds of desolate winds, it has my immediate attention. “Tremorous Dreamer” is a fantastic follow up track as it fires off a barrage of minimalistic field recordings, hissing loops and obscure guitar strums. It’s like having a dream that turns into a nightmare, in which you never awake. There is something really sinister about this sound. “Magpies In The Cherry Tree’ continues the menacing atmosphere with an industrialized hum in the background while the sounds of nature try to elicit a particular purity. More random guitar strokes and beautiful use of field recordings continue this endeavor that is like a journey into the unknown. “Paroxysm” begins with a beautiful & retrospective melody that is joined with slight wind and rain sounds. As nature takes a turn for the worse, the journey must continue and the bleak field recordings lead the way. Again, looping guitar strums become a focal point and may even cause a startling reaction due to being the loudest intonation in the mix. “Leaf Blowers In Paradise” is up next and the title alone is a hit in itself. This song presents another masterful blend of field recordings, many which are audible to the point of knowing what they are, while others provide a grim backplane for the track itself. As random as these pieces may sound, they provide a wonderful sense of balance in not only this track, but throughout the entire album. “The Devil will Always Chase The Hungry” is another marvelous song title and it perfectly matches the minimalistic ambience that ensues. There are more classic synthwave textures on this track and a soothing resonance that is a much welcomed surprise. “The Dynamical Nature Of Time” pieces together chirping birds, environmental elements and looping instrumentation. Overall, this song is bleak, with austere timbres that has an uneasy effect. “Drug Rug Wedding” is an interesting title that combines looping buzzes, howling winds and creepy modulations to produce an extremely horrid outcome. Reverberated guitar tones sound so apocalyptic as it demonstrates an ever growing presence of demise. “Plague Demon” begins with the sounds of doomed terror via haunting synth keys before settling into a more holistic dirge complete with soothing guitar tones and aquatic-styled field recordings. “Device Control” is a suitable follow up track as it showcases the same aesthetics as the previous track but in a more hurried way. Although there isn’t a lot going on in this song, the synths provide the lead instrumentation while the adamant rain drop field recordings showcase a percussive element. The guitar strums sound very distant – almost dreamlike – in the mix, allowing for a wide imaginative space to contemplate these sounds. “Shadow Signifier” begins with a deep, spacey drone that soon fuses with harshly reverberated acoustic guitars and random field recordings to break up the monotony. “Left Hand Pathogen” starts like a cosmic soundscape with high pitched screeches and samples. The desolate sounds of walking down a damp path comes into play while audible rings signify the beginning…or the end. This is one of my favorite tracks on the album. “The Summoner And The Summoned” is one of the most bizarre tracks as the guitar loops are like a deformed echo moving through a modulation chamber while the chirps of bird are caught singing next to this industrialized musical gear. The sounds of stones scraping in the middle of the song is really creepy, while the untimed strums of a detuned guitar continue to impress. “Desert Storm Memorabilia” is a thought-inducing track that could represent a variety of subject matter. More naturalistic soundscapes accompany acoustic guitar strums and other borrowing sounds that present a bold tone of menacing proportions. The final track on this mammoth of an album is, “Vertical Burial (Improvisation)”. For this track we get a clear picture of compositional acoustic riffs combines with tape hisses and the occasional field recording. This is such an intriguing effort and another one of my favorite tracks. I could listen to a whole album of these type of improvised acoustic guitar textures. As the album closer, it brings everything into prospective as if the harsh elements of a monstrous journey has come to a triumphant end.

I’ve been a huge fan of Robert Eggplant ever since ‘Amalgamation’ came out back in 2019. His recordings have a very distinct sound and rely heavily on field recordings rather than traditional Dark Ambient instrumentation. For me, this is a breath of fresh air, as it showcases something distinct and unique to the artist that is undeniable in every way. On ‘Dog Island’, he continues with that same recording technique and delivers another masterpiece of an album. If you’re into something that is less song structured and more sound structured, then I can’t recommend Robert Eggplant enough. Please click on the links below to download this amazing album and check out his previous albums as well. You definitely won’t be disappointed.

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Links:

https://shimmeringmoodsrecords.bandcamp.com/album/dog-island

https://roberteggplant.bandcamp.com

Top 10 Favorite Dark Ambient Albums Of 2022

This was another amazing year for the Dark Ambient genre and again, I had a very difficult time fine tuning my Top 10 list. If truth be told, I could have probably created a Top 50 list. Many mainstay projects created some of their best music ever, while a lot up up and coming artist created spectacular albums that could easily compete with the best of them. Either way, these 10 albums are my favorite of the year and I’m excited to share them with you. How many of these albums made it to your Top 10 list?

10. Blackweald – From The Dust Of The Old Hungarian Plains, Emerges The Invisible Claw That Drags Us Into Our Rotting Grave

https://blackweald.bandcamp.com/album/from-the-dust-of-the-old-hungarian-plains-emerges-the-invisible-claw-that-drags-us-into-our-rotting-grave

Blackweald always leaves an quite an impression with each release. On his sole release from 2022, we get to experience a bold blend of space ambient, mesmerizing drones, soundscapes, narrative samples and enough field recordings to create a series of audial adventures that are spread across a ninety minute platform. Not as dark as previous efforts but certainly versatile enough to appeal to a wider audience in the electronic/ambient community.

9. God Body Disconnect – Spiral Of Grief

https://cryochamber.bandcamp.com/album/spiral-of-grief

God Body Disconnect never disappoints and I’m always looking forward to a new album by this project with eager anticipation. On ‘Spiral Of Grief’ we get a nice dose of the traditional narrative parts with soothing drones and soundscapes that are hypnotizing from start to finish. Tracks such as “Memories Become Distant Rooms” and “The Fathomless Heart” are downright otherworldly. However, as peaceful as this recording is, there is an underlying darkness – in the form of desolation – that gives these tracks extra meaning.

8. Ajna – Mors Ultra

https://cycliclaw.bandcamp.com/album/mors-ultra

Ajna creates a slowly deteriorating realm of alluring drones and space ambient elegance on the nearly two and a half hour opus, ‘Mors Ultra’. Defining a process that lethargically gnaws at the psyche and combining it with an acumen of tonal clarity, this is a highly addictive album that has garnered a lot of playtime from me, hence earning a spot on my list of favorites Dark Ambient albums for this year. Not having a dull moment on the entire album, each track will have you listening (and understanding) with grave enthusiasm.

7. Eshaton – Arheia

https://eshaton.bandcamp.com/album/arheia?label=2690771343

This is one of my new favorite projects by Scorpio V. The mastermind behind Metatron Omega and Monasterium Imperi, presents another take on the Warhammer 40k sound with a much rawer style and delivery. Looping tape hisses and layers of Gregorian chants pave the way for this thirty four minute long track, as the grainy production and synth delivery is quite unique and enlightening. ‘Arheia’ presents a dark unknown from an ancient civilization that is part ritualistic and part spiritual – in the sense of how the music has such a strong, dynamic effect. It’s hard to count how many times I’ve listened to this album but even rolling into the new year, that counter will continue to climb.

6. Sana Obruent – Aftoktonia

https://sanaobruent.bandcamp.com/album/aftoktonia

I first became familiar with the works of Sana Obruent on the 2021 release, ‘Fatem’ and instantly became a fan. To say that I was extremely excited for another album is a huge understatement. This year saw the the release of ‘Aftoktonia’ and as expected, its a triumphant release. Nearly an hour and forty five minutes of minimalistic, looping drones. ‘Aftoktonia’ is an imposing collection of obscure tones and discordant modulations that are as eerie as they are tranquillizing. Sana Obruent excels at creating a world that’s easy to get lost in and ‘Aftoktonia’ is the ultimate, creative set to keep you there.

5. Caldon Glover – Labyrintia

https://cycliclaw.bandcamp.com/album/labyrintia

Over the past few years, Caldon Glover has left quite the impression by releasing some amazing albums under a few different project names (a few in which I have reviewed on this site). However, his ultimate collection of Dark Ambient anthems just may be his current Cyclic Law release, ‘Labyrintia’. Deep, spacious drones and pronounced soundscapes make up the arsenal of this gigantic creation. With the backing of a major Dark Ambient label and a killer production, this is one of my favorite recordings of the year. It’s obvious that the passion that went in to the making of this album was spot on, as the distressed cadence and tense settings are sure to render a lasting effect.

4. Tineidae – Mothership

https://cryochamber.bandcamp.com/album/mothership

‘Mothership’ has been one of my most played Dark Ambient albums of the year so far. With a bludgeoning sound that reminds me of one of my all-time favorite movies (Blade Runner 2049), this is the empyrean dystopian-themed release of the year. The synth sound is so huge, portraying a trance-filled atmosphere with chronic tones and soundscapes. If this is what the distant future sounds like, please hurl me there now so that I can partake in post-apocalyptic battle for humanity, while playing this soundtrack for all to here. Such a stunning release that should be heard by all.

3. Colonial Skyway – Evening On Earth

https://colonialskyway.bandcamp.com/album/evening-on-earth

When I’m looking for a specific type of music that provides a meditative soundtrack of wonder and openness, I look no further than Colonial Skyway. My go-to artist for all things drone, Colonial Skyway has a niche for turning monotonous noise into asomatous art that is not only relatable but introspective to say the least. Each track has a disparate style but delivers in complete solidarity when played as a whole. Not only does this album provide a level of entertainment value, but is excels at cleansing the mind of reprehensible thoughts in exchange for a positive focus.

2. Mombi Yuleman – Hours Lost

https://mombiyuleman.bandcamp.com/album/hours-lost

It’s extremely hard to pick a Mombi Yuleman album for a Top 10 list, especially with everything he produces is FIRE! That being said, one thing that draws you in to his music is the conceptual themes that coincide with the audio. For 2022, the album that resonated with me the most was ‘Hours Lost’. Based on the true story of an alien abduction case from 1961, ‘Hours Lost’ has a particularly nostalgic value that takes the listener back to that era for an experience like no other. Deep drones, sinister soundscapes and an alien-like vibe are some of the key factors that ensure this album is the real deal. If you’ve not heard this one yet, you’re missing out on quite the Dark Ambient experience.

1. Metatron Omega – ISIH

https://cryochamber.bandcamp.com/album/isih

Metatron Omega is my favorite Dark Ambient artist and the intonations created by this project are something that must be experienced. Heavily themed in the Warhammer 40k universe, Metatron Omega uses Gregorian Chants along with malevolent ambient tones to create the most powerful electronic music around. Call me biased, but this is not only my favorite Metatron Omega album (so far), but my Dark Ambient album of the year. To top that, “Megalosthronos” just may be the best MO track of all-time. With the use of looping percussion, this song has an unusual groove and form that stands out amongst the rest. Don’t sleep on this exemplary album.


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Reality Scruncher Produces Otherworldly Timbres On Minimalistic Debut, ‘Deep Space Impingement’

I’m really excited to finally be publishing this review. Reality Scruncher is a new Drone/Dark Ambient project by jack-of-all-trades blogger, Casey Douglass. In case you’re not familiar, Casey always takes an impressive dive into all things obscure, including music, films and books. Speaking of books, Casey is also an accomplished author with many tales of horror and menacing bewilderment under his belt. Now, he is taking on the audial channels with his first Dark Ambient album, ‘Deep Space Impingement’. Thirty seven terrifying minutes of celestial modulations and deepened voids spread across five impressive tracks. How does this intro album stack up against the rest of the genre? Let’s take a deeper dive and find out.

Sinister lead off track, “Hope Into Terror” gradually comes into full perspective as it adjusts with audial bends in and out of earshot. With each louder intonation, it’s apparent that a horrific scene of deep space terror is abound. About halfway into the track, the wavering radiance declines as a mechanical drone – akin to a vessel drifting about in the far reaches of space – produces a mesmerizing sound with bits of chilling effects throughout. Toward the end, the tone grows louder as a doomed final destination becomes imminent. “Constricted Temporals” epitomizes the droning technique as a deep, hypnotic modulation emits an articulate and muffled sound. This track is nearly twelve minutes of eerie soundscapes that slowly builds with layers of ambient pitches that resemble the darkest areas of space where boundaries cannot be identified and the nearest celestial bodies are nowhere in site. This track represents nothingness and the imposing frequencies that it produces as a total sense of anxiety completely unfolds. “Shimmering Spectral Anomaly” continues the epic droning but with a wobbling effect of ominous proportions. As the timing continues to fluctuate, one begins to question the horrors of a possible cosmic impact that is bound to expire all life form in its path. As the song nears its completion, loud revolts form synth pads come into play, providing a level of audial defiance that could change the impending course of this unfolding terror. “Quantum Monstrosities Frolic” is another gigantic undertaking as the drones are presents with more reverberations and tonal distortion. This creates a malevolent sound and is also the pinnacle of horror for this album as a whole. There are some assorted sound effects throughout but are used sparingly, as this track is a true image of nightmares. The final track on the album is, “Suicidal Infinity”. Complete with hollow drones and industrialized soundscapes, this is the ravenous ending that I was hoping for. Most of the audial extremities occur slightly in the background, allowing for the white noise-styled drone to continue as the lead character for this song. The bits and pieces that do occur in the background sound like distant storms and interferences that could become closer as time continues. Suddenly, a loud, glaring alarm begins to blast away, as it warns of a distressed energy that is inbound, ready to infiltrate all forms of communication. As the warning fades away, we’re left with the icy cold sound of endless drones and the realization that nothing is more terrifying than the deep explorations of space.

‘Deep Space Impingement’ by Reality Scruncher is an absolutely amazing Dark Ambient effort and it truly captures the essence of deep space drones and the emotions that come with it. Minimalistic tones with sparse use of sound effects is the combination that is right up my alley and it works very well for this debut recording. I hope that Casey continues his recording career under this moniker and produces more Dark Ambient albums in the same vein as this one. I highly recommend checking out this album if you’re into cosmic drones with horrifying consequences. Please click on the link below and download this bleak but entertaining musical experience.

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Links:

https://realityscruncher.bandcamp.com/album/deep-space-impingement

The Lonely Bell Submerges To Abysmal Depths On ‘Kingdoms Of The Deep’

When it comes to Dark Ambient music – or Ambient music in general – it’s important to be able to connect to a theme or have an interpretation on the visuals. With a genre of music that is typically minimalistic, having an ulterior association is an important aesthetic. Although Dark Ambient mostly associates with Space, post apocalyptic or dystopian themes, it’s such an awesome experience when an artist takes a deep dive (no pun intended) into oceanic matters. That’s exactly what we get to experience on the latest album by The Lonely Bell. ‘Kingdoms Of The Deep’ is a submersible endeavor that chronicles life in the vast blue wonder. Featuring seven aquatic tales that blends diverse styles of music, listeners are able to easily engage these deep sea tales that are ultimate rooted in Drone Ambient music.

Album opener, “Under The Storm”, is a beautiful composition as it begins with the slightly chaotic sounds of a distant storm and then a tranquil transition below the surface as the storm fills are replaced with underwater tides and delicate synth notes. This is the perfect preparation for the rest of the album as it sets a certain sense of ease and relaxation. “Somewhere In The Baltic” commences with a deep drone and is soon met with warm tones and reverberated melodies. The balance of natural sounds and serene instrumentation is trance inducing and will peacefully transport the listener to dreams of vivid dark colors and pastoral territories. “Marine Life” consists of layers of opulent guitar strums and airy harmonies that produce the most easygoing sound that truly represents a peaceful aquatic life. Although this is one of the shorter tracks on the album, it connects to the soul with larger-than-life musicality. “Kingdom Of The Deep” vastly represents the album as a whole with its grandiose drones that depict the vast voids of subsurface space. The occasional sub harmonic wave create a low grumble that commands the listeners’ reverence for just how large and seemingly endless Earths oceans are. The physical attributes below the surface may represent the kingdom, but it’s the ocean itself that is king. “The Dancing Seagrass” is another terse offering that gives prominence to light-hearted melodies and warm drones. This quaint little piece illuminates the mood and offers a serendipitous take on a life of depth and darkness. At nine minutes and fifty two seconds, “Drowned Civilizations” is the longest anthem on the album and in my opinion is the crowning achievement amongst these compositions. Without rushing, a steady dose of warm drones and congenial keys comes into full spectrum while creating a balance of beauty and hypnotic intonations. As the song finally starts to fade, it is an awesome interpretation of the incessant realms of bleak fluidity. The closing track is the epic, “The Final Light”. Illusory drones and lethargically howling winds provide a backdrop for effervescently flowing guitar melodies that symbolizes an aggrandized submersion into darker territories that seemingly drift further from natural light. As haunting as it is melancholic, this is the ultimate way to close this wondrous tale. For the final minute, we’re left with a single drone that captures the pure essence of isolation.

The Lonely Bell is an unparalleled artist that isn’t afraid to venture into other sonic domains to expand the gift of drone music. Creating a subsurface adventure through audial sequences, our ears are afforded the opportunity to navigate uncharted territories as we glide through the depths of vast waters, armed with our imagination. To create an endeavor like this demands a huge creative sense and a passion for audial storytelling. Let ‘Kingdoms Of The Deep’ become your guide through liquid darkness and enjoy the journey along the way. I highly recommend this album for fans of cinematic drone music and pastoral escapades of the deep. Click the link below to download this superb offering.

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Links:

https://thelonelybell.bandcamp.com/album/kingdoms-of-the-deep

Calignosia Adjures Lovecraft Themes On The Luminous ‘What Has Risen May Sink, And What Has Sunk May Rise’

Since 2020, Calignosa has been producing a very distinctive brand of cinematic Dungeon Synth. Combining haunting orchestrations and majestic synth tones with ethereal Medieval themes, Calignosia has established a quality that is undeniable. On latest effort, ‘What Has Risen May Sink, And What Has Sunk May Rise’ Calignosia delivers his most gallant offering yet. Forty six minutes of ambient-filled Dungeon Synth, influenced by mighty Lovecraft tales complete this audial saga that transcends boundaries and amplifies spectacular songwriting.

On opening track “An Invocation To Cthulhu”, ominous tones and instrumental variants emit an introductory song riddled with mystery and haunting soundscapes. The percussive elements depict a time of precipitancy and excitement. “Once Upon A Time In Arabia” is a sonic piece with a Middle Eastern vibe and spacious orchestrations that are soundtrack worthy. As the arrangement shifts through volume changes and crescendos, Calignosia skillfully fuses patterns of beautifully constructed parts that produce a stellar orchestration. “Wandering In The Desert Of Rub’ Al Khali” is a light-hearted interpretation of vast melodies and layers of harmonious intonations with a touch of dreamy narrations that – at times – are very brooding. “By Night They Come Alive” is akin to a professionally composed orchestration with the addition of splendid narrations and a touch of traditional Dungeon Synth sounds. “Iram Dhāt Al-‘Imād” is a somber track with elongated synth notes and light ambient impressions with bouts of lead orchestrations and an overall ethereal vibe. Naturalistic field recordings add to the ambiance, creating a a warm world of solace and tranquility. “Spectral Winds Always Blow From The North” begins with an ambient fill that crescendos slowly into a dark soundscape with menacing results. Inaudible narrations with grim effects add a level of darkness that amplifies the gloomy sounds of this track. “Toward A Nameless City” is a buoyant song full of warm emotions and effervescent orchestrations. This track definitely represents a gleeful time in a distant fantasy world. Modulated narrations are a welcomed touch that injects a sense of animation into the overall experience of this track. “Meditations Of A Mad Man I (Within The Nameless City)” presents an obscure darkness that will keep you on the edge of your seat. With the feeling of a certain evil lurking around every corner, the menacing nuances throughout do an amazing job at painting a surreal picture of bleak embrace. “Meditations Of A Mad Man II (De Profundis)” is a continuation of the crepuscular sounds of Part I but in a more ambient way. With layers of elongated notes, angelic vocal effects and the occasional discordant tone, this is a quixotic way to conclude this two part magnum opus. The final track on this breathtaking album is, “Bedouin Song”. A lively song that embellishes peace and harmony, it features stringed instrumentation and a jaunty blend of synths and percussion that is sure to result in a celebratory dance of boundless energy.

Calignosia is an exceptional artist that epitomizes the orchestral sound and goes above and beyond to create an authentic brand of Dungeon Synth that is easily recognizable. Layers of exuberant orchestrations, unerring soundscapes and an ear for memorable melody are the keys to the mighty adventures that Calignosia always sends us on and ‘What Has Risen May Sink, And What Has Sunk May Rise’ is no exception, as it may be his most exploratory album yet. Fans of classical orchestrations and adventurous Dungeon Synth tones shouldn’t pass on this massive undertaking. Click on the link below to check out this astounding album, you’ll be glad you did.

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Links:

https://calignosia.bandcamp.com/album/what-has-risen-may-sink-and-what-has-sunk-may-rise

Eyre Transmissions XX – Interview With Cryo Chamber Labels’ Multifaceted, Dark Ambient Producer, Tineidae

One thing that is really unique about the artists on the Cryo Chamber Label, is that they all have their signature sound that distinguishes them amongst their label mates. Tineidae brings a fresh, exciting sound that is perceptible in several ways. For one, there is an invigorating fusion of Berlin School, trance, and other facets of electronic music that create a futuristic sea of emotion. There is also an abrupt sense of dystopian landscapes that are crushing in every way. That being said, Tineidae has become a premier up-and-coming Dark Ambient artist that you won’t want to miss. I had a chance to catch up with the rhapsodic producer to find out more about this exhilarating project, it’s beginnings and what the future holds.

1. I really appreciate this interview opportunity. Tineidae has already released a few really impressive albums on the mighty Cryo Chamber label. How did that relationship come to be?

Hey and thanks for the questions! Cryo Chamber is a bunch of creative people with quite a specific aesthetic, that I myself dig. I liked some of the older stuff of Atrium Carceri released in Cold Meat Industry era (in fact that was one of the first dark ambient projects I have enjoyed listening to). Naturally after some time I had a change in the sound of the project that seemed to be fitting. So as per usual, I looked up Cryo Chamber demo policy and sent in my demo (which was EXO at that time). It was a gradual development and there was communication going on between Simon and me, but in the end he quite liked it and so EXO was set to be released through Cryo Chamber.

2. ‘Exo’, released in 2020, had such a massive, dystopian sound – which perfectly matched the times of the beginning of the COVID pandemic. Did you explore a lot of Dark Ambient tones or situational events when coming up with your signature sound?

Ah man, it’s hard 😀 I’ll be honest, I don’t really remember what led me to it. It’s just more bass-heavy ambient, I guess. I wasn’t really aiming at something specific, as most part of it I think was created still when pandemic wasn’t a thing. But yeah, it played nicely together, esp. that I like heavier and darker feel in music in general.

https://cryochamber.bandcamp.com/album/exo

3. You impressively blend in subtle bits of Berlin School and Trance. What are some of your influences for the Tineidae project?

Funny that you mention trance, and actually you’re quite on point 🙂 For Berlin School electronica part, I think most of it comes from the time when i was a kid and my parents and i liked to listen to a lot of 80s electronica on cassetes or vinyls. And for trance, yeah, all the supersaw trance of 2000, but also later post-industrial stuff (aggrotech, rhythmic noise, dark-electro etc.) were all heavily focusing on synth leads with that trance-like feel and that is the kind of music that i like to this day. I just like catchy melodies i guess.

4. Before Tineidae, were you involved with other musical ventures?

There were some, yes, fortunately none of those are on the Internet anymore (or at least I hope so). At around 2007-2008 when I was quite under influence of post-industrial (and esp. goth industrial on peak of its popularity), there was one project where together with another guy we were making music (something akin to aggrotech) and I was on vocals. It was fun, there even were some local gigs, but ultimately I stopped enjoying it after a few years. Later on there were two other bands (some black, some death metal) where I tried as a vocalist, but I think I attended a few practice sessions at most and didn’t really feel like it was my thing.

5. Since you mentioned Black and Death metal, do you there there is a parallel between extreme metal and Dark Ambient music?

Oh absolutely. Someone was asking me on discord some time ago about what it feels like to release stuff on Cryo Chamber and be part of its roster, and I was joking that it often feels like a chill-room for tired metalheads, as a lot of artists are or were involved in different kinds of extreme music.

6. Earlier this year, we saw the release of ‘Mothership’ which greatly expanded on the ‘Exo’ sound. What was the process like going into producing this album?

It was indeed an attempt to expand the setup and have some more bits of lore here and there suggested by the track names. The sound turned to be a bit more aggressive (at least now when i listen and compare, i feel like it is), unintntionally, likely again due to the heavier influence of industrial and other dark electronica i’m into lately. We’re not done yet tho 🙂

https://cryochamber.bandcamp.com/album/mothership

7. What kind of world/dimension do you want your listeners to experience when listening to your work?

I don’t like to have things overly specific, as this way every listener has their own story in mind that unravels with each album. For me personally it is a story of distant future where people drift through space living aboard huge motherships, harvesting resources from the planet’s atmosphere, discovering new habitats and lifeforms.

8. “Behind The Seal” is my favorite track from ‘Mothership’. There are so many explorations in this track that make it stand out amongst the others. What was your vision for this particular track?

For people who are still living on the planet’s surface, Mothership is more of a mystery, they only see its lights slowly drifting in the night sky every once in a while, knowing nothing about what’s actually happening inside. As the album is retold from a point of view of a new recruit who comes aboard the mothership, it is that moment of unveiling the greatest mystery of his life (as no one ever returns back from the Mothership).

9. In terms of the equipment that you use for recording, did anything change between albums or did you use the same gear? Can you describe what your recording setup is like?

The setup is rather minimal – field recordings are done with good old Zoom h2n, some sounds come out of Roland JD-XI, some from a bass guitar meticulously tortured by different exciters, but like 95% is in the box (VST synthesizers and effects, samples etc.). Actually i think i even got the whole process of making at least one of the tracks during live-streams (uploaded to my youtube now), and that one was 100% in the box (okay maybe some odd field-recordings or other noises from “outside” sources, but that’s about it).

10. Going back to ‘Mothership’, another track that I find truly impressive is “Manufacturing Facility”. The dynamics of that track is so massive and the sampling sequences are quite mesmerizing. Do you approach each track with a particular idea or do you build a story and find ways to connect each track?

Thanks, yeah that’s a neat track. Usually there is a rough idea it all starts with and there are different approaches to try and implement it, sometimes it takes a good bunch of attempts to get somewhere. In this particular case it all started with a sound design session, which means, i just get some sound source and try to destroy it with a variety of effects, modulations and what not, all while recording it. Then a resampling comes into play, where I pick the parts that I like the most and do another bunch of processing and mangling and modulations and what not. The process continues till I arrive at something that feels particularly close to what I have in mind, or if not I may restart it from scratch. In this case I had a bunch of “best picks” from one of such sessions, that sounded quite mechanical to me. At that time I already had an idea of a space inside the Mothership that would be some sort of a factory or a refinery unit, so all these things pretty much started falling into their places after some time spent arranging and playing with moods and melodies. In other tracks I sometimes start with melodies instead, and continue developing ideas with more focus on melodies, but resampling and sound design usually still find there way in.

For the second question, I tend to have an idea first and at least try to lead the sound that way (it doesn’t always work tho and sometimes music just starts living on its own, which isn’t bad either)

11. Most recently, you released a collaboration album with Drifting In Silence called ‘Simulation’. How did this partnership come about?

Derrick has found me on facebook and IG some time after ‘Slowly Drown In Static’ was released. at that point I haven’t heard his music yet, we had some chats about music in general, he’s just a cool human being who happens to have a similar taste in music. At some point we started discussing the possibility of a collaborative release, and yeah he had some amazing ideas and so he was more like leading the way and we started working on it (slowly, with some breaks at least on my end due to IRL stuff and having several other projects ongoing at the same time – bad time management skill, simply put).

https://driftinginsilence.bandcamp.com/album/simulation

12. Musically, both Drifting In Silence and Tineidae are sonically different, yet the combination of these projects work quite well. How did the two of you collaborate on the actual song building?

As I mentioned, Derrick had some really good ideas, and some jams and drones recorded in his studio – those were a starting point. Some tracks were in my opinion pretty much ready, so i probably added just a bit of flavor, and others we worked on different layers, sometimes adding sometimes taking out things, or even splitting and rearranging some of the longer tracks giving them different feel and texture. There was quite a bit of experimentation and trusting the gut feeling so to speak on my end, but i feel like for the most part those experiments turned out pretty good.

13. Do you have any plans to collaborate with other artists in the future?

I love collaborations, really, often to the point that I start too many and have hard time finishing any of those in a timely manner. And so this year several of those came out and some yet to come out at the end of this year, and there are still several ongoing and I can’t wait to share more info about those when they’re more fleshed out.

14. Speaking of collaborations, I just realized that you took part in last years’ annual Cryo Chamber Lovecraft release, ‘Dagon’. What was that experience like?

The whole collab is akin to a big brainstorm process, but in musical terms – all artists have some ideas and generate sounds and drones that are fitting the narrative or overall atmosphere,and then those are used as building blocks to form a bigger picture. It’s a pretty cool opportunity, esp. for a more sound-design-driven approach (as not everything has to be a drone or a melody), and you get a chance to focus on the fine details of each sound as much as you want to. Also limited sound pool lets you find different ways for implementing creative decisions as some of the sounds may be out of your “comfort zone” and you have to figure out how to make it work the way you want it to.

15. When not creating music yourself, who are some other artists (any genre) that you enjoy listening to?

Without a specific order or priority: Access to Arasaka, Sole Massif, 0 0 0, Belief Defect, X1-Y2, LORN, Cresil, REZZ, Tzafu, Swarm Intelligence, Maenad Veyl, Swarm Intelligence, Braden Koksal, Filmmaker, Jim Kimchi, meii, Prox.Bleep, Carpenter Brut, Sierra, Restive Plaggona, Pact Infernal, Godspeed You! Black Emperor and stuff in that vein.

16. If not done so already, are there plans to bring Tineidae to a live setting?

Likely the other way around (at least for now) 🙂 Back in the days of Tympanik Audio, I had some live shows and performances here and there. Currently with all the stuff happening IRL I doubt I’ll be able to properly prepare for live events, so instead i’d rather focus on production more and stream the process for anyone finding any helpful info in it.

17. Again, I truly appreciate your time and most of all, the fantastic music that you produce. Do you have any final thought for your fans or anyone else that may be reading this article?

Thank you so much for the questions, and you’re very kind. Stay true to yourself, put the most effort into what makes you feel complete or fulfilled, make your dreams into goals and plan on how to realistically achieve them (if possible of course), and most importantly try to keep your physical and mental health in check. Cheers!

Links:

Bandcamp: https://tineidae.bandcamp.com

Instagram: https://instagram.com/71ne1dae?igshid=YmMyMTA2M2Y=

Twitter: https://twitter.com/tineidae_music?s=21&t=Hx6EUIQZatjekYSjrQhWCw

Interstellar Space – All Hallows’ Eve Extravaganza 2022

For some reason, trees seem to be synonymous with all things spooky and evil. Whether it’s a darkened forest in a horror movie, or the ruffling of leaves in an evening breeze that has us looking over our shoulders for something creepy, trees create a space of frightening imagination with limitless potential for purpose. For Halloween, trees portray a gruesome shadow in the night that causes goosebumps and chills when not expected. Remember the tree in the original Poltergeist film? They also create a blockade for hiding behind so that you can jump out and scare your friends while trick or treating. Whatever the case may be, trees serve more of a purpose than the ecology for their existence. Like trees, music provides the same escape by enticing an imaginative spark for which you can escape from reality. That’s exactly the case for these twelve chilling albums. They are the soundtrack for the season and so much more. Please enjoy these summary reviews and show your support for these artists by downloading their killer albums. Happy Halloween!! 🎃


1. Lamp & Dagger – This Tape Is Haunted Too!

Lamp & Dagger is back with their second spooktacular collaboration, featuring a handful of ominous artists that aim to frighten your very existence. From Sombre Arcane’s psychedelic massacre to a modicum of Dark Ambient soundscapes from The Night Keep that feature morbid field recordings and samples. FVRFVR offers a chip tune spectacle that is part crypt hop and part nostalgic cinema. Whispering Mirror offers a droning canticle full of gruesome modulations, while Halm conjures up some disgusting field recordings to create a gruesome scene of terror. The final track by Spectral Manse proposes a climactic ending with eerie narrations, malevolent haunts and lots of dark melody that penetrates deep in the psyche, proving that the sequel is just as damning as the original offer. I’ll never get enough of these compilations so I’m already looking forward to Halloween 2023.

https://lampanddagger.bandcamp.com/album/this-tape-is-haunted-too

2. Guild Of Lore – Night Of Halloween

Dungeon synth stalwart, Guild Of Lore, steps beyond the realm of Winterstead, leaving behind the Medieval intonations to embrace a world of 80’s-influenced synthwave with elements of cinematic horror. The results are a fascinating blend of B-horror movie anthems full of ghoulish field recordings, theatrical samples and rhythmic patterns that scream the elements of classic horror film soundtracks. “Lurking In The Shadows” is a prime example of ample beats, darkwave undertones, and retrospective synths, while “The Festivities” is done in the style of a skit, with spooky narrations, haunting screams and bleak atmospherics. This is an album that’s not just enjoyable during All Hallows’ Eve, but can provide eerie entertainment throughout the year, and for many years to come.

https://guildoflore.bandcamp.com/album/night-of-halloween

FABLEHAVEN: “None who enter will leave unchanged. Trespassers will be turned to stone.” – Brandon Mull

3. Erythrite Throne – A Shade Of Melancholy In The Shadow Of Death

If your not listening to Erythrite Throne on All Hallows’ Eve, then you’re either very much afraid or have already been bitten by a post-apocalyptic zombie. In the case of the latter, perhaps ‘A Shade Of Melancholy In The Shadows Of Death’ has become the perpetual soundscape for your existence. Expertly fusing classical synth tones and the occasional blasts of tasty percussion, this is another magnum opus from the master of Dungeon Synth music. Just as the title suggests, this album is a bit more lugubrious than other Erythrite Throne albums, but that’s what makes this project so special. Especially on Halloween, this is some classically creepy music to enjoy on this malevolent night.

https://serpentsswordrecords.bandcamp.com/album/a-shade-of-melancholy-in-the-shadow-of-death

4. Aleksis Tristan Shaw – Crooked Teeth

The ever so cleaver Aleksis Tristan Shaw once again keeps us on our toes with a musical endeavor that defies genre categorization but is presented just in time for Halloween. These three tracks showcase beautiful, yet twisted piano melodies with a dreamy, atmospheric production. Just as the album cover suggests, I can only imagine a blurry figure sitting behind the ivories and playing these dirges to conjure up the spirits of ancient past, allowing them to provide frights once again. Although each track is different, they each have a thematic element that maintains a dark but elegant mood. A full album of these ghastly sounds would be awesome as well.

https://aleksistristanshaw.bandcamp.com/album/crooked-teeth

“No one who loves the woods stays on the path.” – Millie Florence

5. Wodenwyrd – The Teutoburg Massacre

Wodenwyrd presents a rather unique recording as a short narrative is read over obscure backing tracks that fusses Dungeon Synth, Dark Ambient and synthwave. Read over a series of Acts (seven in all), the story summarizes the first battle between German forces and the Roman Empire around 9 AD. As compelling as the story is, the music fits perfectly and produces a brooding gray background for a malevolent narrative. There are three stand alone tracks that serve as an intro, intermission and outro and they explore more nostalgic territories such as 80’s cinema and dreamy effects. In all, this is a fantastic album and I wouldn’t mind having a series of recordings in this style.

https://wodenwyrd.bandcamp.com/album/the-teutoburg-massacre

6. Born From Pain – Begotten (1989)

Just in time for Halloween, Born From Pain delivers another compelling motion picture re-score. This time, 1989’s horror/fantasy film, ‘Begotten’, becomes the object of creativity as the quest for Dark Ambient obscurity reigns supreme. Over seventy two minutes of ethereal order becomes the pallet for rediscovering this film in a more sinister light. The film itself, is supremely bleak and a boldly obscure statement for cinema at the time of its release. If your a fan of cult filmmaker, Maya Deren, then you’ll have a good understanding of this film. As for the music, Born From Pain masterfully captures that essence with gloomy soundscapes and haunting effects that will lead to nightmarish outcomes in itself. Another fascinating adventure that I can’t recommend enough.

https://bornfrompainbm.bandcamp.com/album/begotten-rescore

“When you go into a forest, anything can happen” – David Farr

7. Scott Lawlor – The Livestream Series, Volume V

Scott Lawlor, the king of spatial Drone music and a jack-of-all-trades Ambient musician that never stops working and has enough released material to create the soundtrack to your very existence for years on end. On Halloween of last year, he produced a five hour livestream special that will be digitally released on Halloween this year. Spanning eleven tracks, this colossal of an album, flows like a never ending experiment through celestial voids and dark passages, as enigmatic effects combine with baneful textures to create the realm you’ve always dared to travel through. Each track presents a malefic journey through dark regions of the subconscious, bringing a terrorized reality to the forefront of the mind. Good luck getting through all five hours of this but enjoy the breathtaking adventure along the way.

8. Orcchasm – OrcChasm!

Orcchasm is truly unique experience, as we encounter a variety of musical intonations during this thirty one minute endeavor. From creepy ambience and whimsical synths to bazaar arrangements and nonstop frills, this is a musical adventure that is equally enjoyable and fulfilling. From grandiose, Medieval incantations to light, flute fills, you never know what direction the music is headed. However, hold on to your witches hat and broomsticks because this is a venture that won’t want to miss. Each track flows seamlessly into the next, showcasing a story of dark dungeons and numerous escapades. “Groping For Wild Hogs In The Dark Paphian Abyss” is my favorite track and it truly represents the musical prowess of this album as a whole. Don’t pass up on this warm journey into the wildly unknown.

https://orcchasm.bandcamp.com/album/orcchasm

“The forest was not dark, because darkness has nothing to do with the forest – the forest is made of life, of light – but the trees moved with wind and subtle creatures.” – Lauren Geoff

9. Pumpkin Witch – The Return Of The Pumpkin Witch

It’s been a few years since we’ve heard from Halloween favorite, Pumpkin Witch. However, after finally rising from the Orange tomb of seasonal vegetation, they’ve returned with their most enigmatic spectacle to date, ‘The Return Of The Pumpkin Witch’. Eleven spooky anthems that provide an audial bludgeoning for almost forty four minutes, these progressive haunts are just what the doctor (or vampire or serial killer) has ordered to infiltrate your Halloween playlists. From distorted, doom-laden guitar tones and retrospective drum beats to hair raising electro sequences and synthwave tactics, this is the album that checks all the blocks for horrifying entertainment. Tape hisses and reverberated production efforts create a sinister ambiance that drives the mail in the coffin (no pun intended) for this masterful recording.

https://pumpkinwitch.bandcamp.com/album/the-return-of-the-pumpkin-witch

10. Ammothea – My God Is The Moon

Ammothea, the ambient-infused post metal project by Glacial Anatomy, is truly a riveting encounter that satisfies the pallet of those that enjoy the multi-genre experience. Soft, careening vocals, doom metal riffing and dreamy production yields a hypnotic effect, so that you can sit back, close your eyes and indulge in your own trip. These five tracks disperse almost sixty four minutes of playing time but, it’s over before you know it due to being completely lost in the mix of these alluring intonations. “Depth” and “My God Is The Moon” are standout tracks that incorporate a more upbeat approach without diverting away from the haunting gray that the entire album discharges. This is an extremely impressive release and I’m already looking forward to more from this artist.

https://syrupmooserecords.bandcamp.com/album/my-god-is-the-moon


11. Whöreplay – Whöreplay

A good dark wave tune goes hand in hand with the Halloween season, given its close ties to Gothic romanticism, vampires and grim landscapes. It also has provided bleak, atmospheric backdrops for scenes in classic horror films such as ‘Silence Of The Lambs’. This two track spectacle from newcomer, Whöreplay, fits right in with all of the aforementioned. Although only five minutes long, the artists wastes no time setting the listener on a collision course with haunting electronics, reverberated vocals, and a dreamy production. These tracks slice through like a jagged dagger, leaving a spot of coagulated blood for the creatures of the night to feast on.

https://whoreplay.bandcamp.com/track/misery

12. Unsheathed Glory/Ozeregroth – Nights Shadow Darkening

There is no better time to come together for delivering a darkened dungeon synth experience than Halloween. Unsheathed Glory and Ozeregroth combine their talents of Medieval summonings to render a five track split album, culminating in twenty four minutes of effortless canticles set to the gloomiest night of the year. Not only does each artist produce two tracks of their own, but they collaborate on the daunting self title track. Although each artist delivers contrasting tones, they mesh together very well and and flow transparently with ominous accord. This is one of my favorite Dungeon Synth collaborations of the year and I hope these artist get together again in the future, to produce more music like this.

https://unsheathedglory.bandcamp.com/album/nights-shadow-darkening

Additional forest photos courtesy of Carlton Whittle Photography. Please follow him on IG:

https://instagram.com/a_window_with_a_view?utm_medium=copy_link

The main article image is a unique creation from the WOMBO Dream APP.

Until next Halloween…

Void Stasis Produce One Of The Years Best Dark Ambient Album With Stunning Debut, ‘Ruins’

Over the past couple of years, the Cryo Chamber label has added quite a few new artists to their lineup, broadening the spectrum of Cinematic Dark Ambient music with fresh ideas and the incorporation of other musical styles. One of these new projects is the acutely exquisite, Void Stasis. Three musical talents join forces in this modular blueprint to deliver a soothing array of dystopian soundscapes that transcend the realm of Dark Ambient music. Combining hypnotic beats, Berlin School and cold effects, ‘Ruins’ is quite the spectacular, debut release.

The insanely hypnotic album opener, “Frozen Fire”, begins like so many other Dark Ambient pieces; slow, brooding drones at an attentive pace, anticipating a transition into other domain of sorts. Once the listener gains comfort in this initial expression, profound adjustments are introduced, producing a retrospective atmosphere that is massively transfixing. Slow, Berlin School sequences begin to coil around the main droning sound and then a fixed cadence begins to take shape. There is a lot going on in this opening track but it’s completely suppressing, in a good way. Looping effects create a hypnotic effect as this song become more pleasing by each passing second. “Lung Fibrosis” continues on with the lavish energy of the first track and adds even more melody and dense atmospherics. A calm, static sound plays out in the background as a thudding bass line mingles with obscure sound effects. Various bits of haunting soundscapes completes this alluring piece and perfectly paves the way for one of my favorite tracks on the album. “Blood Eclipse” is a dark electronica journey through reflective Euro beats and gothic undertones. Looping vocalizations are simply mesmerizing with a calming essence. Nothing is out of sequence here, as even the simplest of sounds are synchronized perfectly, alluding to a rhythmic performance that could easily be executed in an underground Deconstructed Club. Up next is the title track, “Ruins”. Commencing with a ghostly piano chop, there are some particularly eerie soundscapes and samples playing in the background. As the track continues, an apocalyptic beat presents a slow tempo in order for the various pieces to all come together in an enigmatic fashion. The overall sound is very dreamy with a lot of reverberation, but that just adds to the mystique of everything that is being offered. “Clockwork” is a grandiose oblation with a huge orchestral sound and it could easily be a part of a Science Fiction movie soundtrack. The keys produce elongated, harmonious notes that are ethereal and reminiscent of classic synthwave sounds. Although the drum beats add a nice flare to the overall mix, they aren’t overbearing and are very enjoyable to hear. “There Is No Life Here” begins with a bleak tone and crescendos into a sonic space ambient texture that is greeted with the right amount of reverb and chaotic effects. Once the percussive element kicks in, it’s business as usual, as you’ll be nodding your head in unison with this superb offering. What sounds like short blasts of guitar riffs, it match the flow of the beats, producing another enjoyable intonation. The final track, “Vision Of A Dead Planet” begins with a piercing drone, with almost an industrial sound to it. Sonic keys begin to deliver another modulated performance with a pensive intonation that is melodic and inviting. Various effects create a dystopian vibe while melancholic keys offer a farewell message that won’t soon be forgotten. Finding a way to include a captivating beat, this track remains in a dark place, ending this album on a high note.

Three exuberant musicians have joined forces to conceive the entity known as Void Stasis and their debut, ‘Ruins’, is one of the most impressive albums I’ve heard this year so far. Combining tranquillizing synths with impressive beats and the incorporation of other electronic genres, this album is an exotic, one-of-a-kind auditory experience for the ages. Hypnotizing and addictive, this collection of songs is monumental and unequivocally belongs on the Cryo Chamber label. Sure to please more than just fans of Dark Ambient music, I can’t recommend this album enough. Please click on the link below and get ready for a breathtaking adventure through the past and future of electronic music.

Please Like/Follow my blog so that you’ll get first hand updates every time I post a review. Thanks for visiting the Dungeon!!

Links:

https://cryochamber.bandcamp.com/album/ruins

The Nebula Breviary – A Voyage Through The Black Hole With Kalamine Records

Kalamine Records has been delivering stunning releases on its Bandcamp page since 2019. The online label from Bordeaux, France specializes in Dark Ambient, Noise, Experimental music as well as a vast array of obscure genres that migrate well off the beaten path. Producing top quality material on a regular basis, it’s difficult for me to schedule these albums for a normal review as I simply don’t have the time. However, with the introduction of this column last month and the multitude of spectacular albums that Kalamine Records have put out as of late, the timing was right for me to pick ten of these albums for summary reviews. I hope you enjoy this article and please check out Kalamine Records at the links below.

1. Mono Hideout – True Lord

‘True Lord’ is a thirty three minute session of adversarial ambience that depicts a dystopian atmosphere of chaos and evil. Although these tracks are shorter than the typical Dark Ambient intonation, the urgency of soundscape buildup and dismal drones fuel a fire of angst-laden heresy that are compelling as much as they are effective at providing huge, atmospheric settings. From celestial & spirited pieces like “Harpocrates” to sinister and minimalistic drones of “The Snake Himself”, Mono Hideout has fabricated a world of dark malevolence.

https://kalaminerecords.bandcamp.com/album/true-lord

2. Helecho Experimentar – OU.. OU.. Sintaxis

Helecho Experimentar combines ominous sound effects, samples and controlled noise on the brilliant release, ‘OU… OU… Sintaxis’. Commencing with a thirty six minute opus that forges a tumultuous passage through layers of obscure musical stanzas, this album presents a relentless impression of restrained noises and hasty modulations. Truly a unique recording, this will soon become an addictive listen as the effort to notice additional peculiarities throughout, are inevitable.

https://kalaminerecords.bandcamp.com/album/ou-ou-sintaxis

3. Mora-Tau – The Five Sutra

Mora-Tau has quickly become one of my favorite Dark Ambient composers and his ever-growing catalog of consistently great recordings is something to be proud of. ‘The Five Sutra’ is another paradigm of esoteric compositions that slowly portrays a story of tragedy through elongated drones, repetitive synth manipulations and a deep venture into angst-filled arrangements. This collection of retrospective anthems provide almost two hours of listening pleasure, allowing the listener enough time to mediate in its thought-provoking sound.

https://kalaminerecords.bandcamp.com/album/the-five-sutra

4. Eijra Woon – Leïla

‘Leïla’ is a compelling offering of Dark Ambient, drone, noise, glitch and a touch of EDM, all wrapped up in a audial adventure that is both seductive and thought provoking. Haunting samples and various spots of vocalizations complete this mesmerizing collection of sonic objects that will leave the listener in a relaxed state at times, as well as emitting bouts of angst during other times. These twelve tracks ebb and flow into various emotive states and the harrowing soundtrack that ensues, is sonically unparalleled. Upon completion of this sixty five minute opus, the listener may become paralyzed with emotional shock and drenched in sweat from sheer survival of the audial jolt that took place.

https://kalaminerecords.bandcamp.com/album/le-la

5. HEL – Innocently Wicked

HEL incorporates a plethora of vocal manipulations to establish a baseline of obscure ambient for showcasing a provocative blend of harmonizing textures and meaningful poetry. This anomalous recording also includes a variety of field recordings and effects to round out this massively peculiar effort. Taking a cappella to extreme realms, HEL emits an uncompromising take on enigmatic, yet experimental music. Highly recommended for those that are brave enough to indulge in uncompromising reaches into evanescent realms.

https://kalaminerecords.bandcamp.com/album/innocently-wicked

6. Christian Fiesel – Barren Land

‘Barren Land’ sounds like a dismal exploration into mystical territories during the cultivation of 70’s or 80’s progressive-influenced synthwave. Vast wastelands are brought to light with soothing orchestrations and mesmerizing drones, as tranquil modulations produce a landscape of effervescent bliss and slow-moving sequences. This one hour long track is a lot to consume, but is equally rewarding and ominous sections fuse together in a single instance, as if wandering various rooms in a mansion, searching for clues to a portentous and puzzling storyline. One thing that remains constant throughout is the vibrant drones that seem peaceful and resonant.

https://kalaminerecords.bandcamp.com/album/barren-land

7. Philippe Simon – Amarante

‘Amarante’ is a colossal offering of minimalistic Dark Ambience that stretches beyond the imagination and pushes the boundaries of atmospheric synth music. At almost eighty minutes in length, these seven tracks produce a transient environment of electronic music that combine Berlin School, drone, space ambient and quirky effects with resilient results. As these long players unwind, a deluge of celestial textures tell a haunting story of abandonment and foreboding solitary confinement. These songs are equally soothing and enthralling to say the least and once you begin this epic journey, it’s hard to stop. Enjoy this sonic masterpiece and the reward is well worth the endurance.

https://kalaminerecords.bandcamp.com/album/amarante

8. Wasatch Front – I Walked Up Stairs

‘I Walked Up Stairs’ showcases a fascinating blend of Dark Ambient, industrialized soundscapes and contained noise. This is not one to relax to or have on as background music. Wasatch Front demands your full attention to the oblivion contained within these five tracks to fathom a true understanding of the audial depth that they collectively offer. Each track takes a grueling approach to the intricacies of obscurity as the listener ascends a staircase into the unknown. As the music breeches the subconscious, a perilous adventure awaits. However, be forewarned; what goes up, must come down.

https://kalaminerecords.bandcamp.com/album/i-walked-up-stairs

9. Hostile Surgery – Into A Cold Light

‘Into A Cold Night’ contains six protracted anthems that extend to almost eighty minutes of playing time. These masterful drones mirror a creativity of malevolent proportions as they represent a barrage of hostile actions that can only be portrayed in nightmares. From deafening modulations to wavering sound effects, there is a certain demise that becomes paramount when indulging in its menacing grasp. Although each of these tracks produce a unique listening experience, the results for all of them is the same- dark, brooding ambience with rugged atmospherics that will leave the listener is a gloomier state than before listening to this massive recording.

https://kalaminerecords.bandcamp.com/album/into-a-cold-light

10. Glamourie – Imaginal Stage

‘Imaginal Stage’ may just be one of my favorite recordings from Kalamine Records. It combines dark and light ambient with a touch of acoustic folk music and even some forest synth and there is so much variation on this album, it’s hard to grasp within a few listens. However, upon multiple listens, you’ll begin to experience a decaying, yet soothing journey into assorted realms of audial reassurance. On the downloadable version of this album, each track is combined with a beautiful, mystical painting that truly represents the soundscape that affectionately makes its way through the speakers (or headphones). This is such a delightful album and I highly recommend this for those that need a peaceful, meditative source to accompany them in their life excursions.

https://kalaminerecords.bandcamp.com/album/imaginal-stage

Website: https://KalamineRecords.com

The King Of Gregorian Mantra’s, Metatron Omega, Is Back With Another Superior Performance With ‘ISIH’

Scorpio V, the driving force behind Prometheus Studio, is back with a new album from his flagship project, Metatron Omega. One of the few acts that produces Dark Ambient music that centers around Gregorian Chants, this Warhammer 40k-themed entity magnificently fuses soothing dark choir vocalizations with minimalistic, bleak ambience, resulting in an enthralling musical experience. In what may be his most sophisticated outing yet, ‘ISIH’ is the full experience of moody, ritualistic anthems that provide a grim landscape for ancient monasteries.

Right off the bat, title track “ISIH” secures a somber atmosphere with soothing Gregorian chants and effervescent ambient tones that flow like a transparent wave of breathless energy through high mountain ranges and cold, desolate valleys. The mood turn dark, as the ambience descends into the depths of bleakness with distant chants that are more sporadic than often. However, perfectly reverberated, it emits a trance-like feeling and subdues the listener with boundless bliss. “Megalosthronos” just may be my favorite Metatron Omega track ever. Commencing with a consoling drone, a tribal-like percussive element is soon embedded, tracing back to the likes of Paleowolf – where ancient civilizations meet theatrical ambience. Once the haunting chants are fused in, it creates a level of intensity and spirit that are completely unmatched. I certainly enjoy this direction that Metatron Omega has included in its repertoire of musical genius. “Imperium Novum” bleeds minimalistic ambience and the electronic-induced vocalizations are at times terrifying and more often mind-numbing. There are sci-fi elements in the narrative inclusions, as if an alien invasion has intercepted a communication transmission from an ancient culture. The weaving chants are mesmerizing and will leave the listener wanting more. “Arhontes” begins with an enthralling wind-like nuisance with the sounds of distant howls and screams. As the droning effort intensified, so does the angst of anticipation for where this track is headed. Chants of desperation are heard in sporadic patterns and when the depth of emotion finally fades, we are left with a calming path of destruction lead by deep, guttural chants and ritualistic ambience with a repressed ferocity and celestial intent. “Vyachnost” is another spectacular track that offers a rhythmic, drum track and the solar sounds continuously build throughout. Industrialized soundscapes and peculiar effects reflect a futuristic energy that is humbly met with ancient chants and warm synth patterns. There is a break toward the end where it morphs into a deep space ambient piece before returning to true Metatron Omega fashion. Vocalizations echo the synth modulations and are barely audible. However, it creates a type of discordance that is completely tranquillizing. “Blagoslovenie” is a return to form that can be heard on the likes of ‘Illuminatio’. The Gregorian chants are prevalent throughout and provide an immense ride into dark, enchanted territories. The deep drones are alarming at times and the moments of near silence – in particular – can be frightening. However, about halfway through, drums begin to fill the air with substantial cadence and synthwave elements are also introduced, as this song begins to take shape like the soundtrack for a Medieval battle. The final track on this monstrous album is “L.U.X.”. Commencing with looping chants and reverberated effects, this track isn’t as desolate as those that preceded it. The ringing of the church bells signifies the coming to an end of a ceremonial event, while the rest of the track continues to press forward with heroic expression. As the end nears, an incessant drone continues the pace as the all-to-familiar chants become softer and more distant.

Positioned in my Top 5 favorite Dark Ambient artist list, Metatron Omega continues to produce impressive albums that remain in line with its own ritualistic thematic expression, while supremely adding new elements and surprises that expand the boundaries of listening intent. ‘ISIH’ is no exception, as it’s probably Metatron Omega’s most expressive album to date. Including dark and light ambient elements and fusing percussion is a welcomed experience and I hope more of this type will be released in the future. If you can’t get enough Metatron Omega, make sure to also check out some of the other side projects in this same vein. Monasterium Imperi has everything you know and love about Metatron Omega but is less cinematic, while offering a deeper dive into the Warhammer 40k sound. Then there is Eshaton, which is an extremely raw and abrasive version that is gritty and relentless and at times has a Dungeon Synth vibe. At any rate, it’s easy to get lost in the realm of Metatron Omega and ‘ISIH’ is a magnificent album that truly represents this artist and craft. Click on the link below to download this album and enjoy the journey that it holds.

Please Like/Follow my blog so that you’ll get first hand updates every time I post a review. Thanks for visiting the Dungeon!!

Links:

https://cryochamber.bandcamp.com/album/isih

https://prometheusstudio.bandcamp.com