Sun Addicted Family Ascend The Elements Of Atmosphere And Experimentation On Powerhouse Avant-garde Debut, ‘Solar Dreams’

I love the element of surprise, especially when it comes to music. However, due to the fact that I’m such a big fan of so many styles, I’m rarely caught off guard when multi-genre’s clash to form an experimental project that’s worth listening to. On occasion though, there have been encounters that weren’t meant to be and are better left alone and unheard of. However, there are times when everything just clicks and the songwriting is beyond captivating and the emotional charge cannot be matched. A project like this that has recently caught my attention is Sun Addicted Family. Auspiciously blending genres such as black metal, shoe-gaze, ambient, post-metal, and space rock, Sun Addicted Family seamlessly ties all of these together with masterful songwriting and with such strong emotion, you’ll find yourself listening to their debut album, ‘Solar Dreams’ over and over again.

The audacious album opener, “Solar”, fuses in haunting ambient keys, drum pads and strumming guitars right from the start. Distant clean vocals can be heard for a few bars before a powerful guitar riff forces its way in the mix. The synth arrangements have a strong shoe-gaze feel in this track, as it blissfully adds a nice layer of ambience throughout the whole song. At around the four and a half minute mark, the speed picks back up, with some black metal screams and wonderful melodic riffs. “Signals” is a slower, looming track with exquisitely layered keys that match the melody of the distorted guitar riffs rather well. The inaudible, harsh vocals are like an additional instrument in this track, and sound great in the spots they are added. The main riff is mesmerizing and you will find yourself drifting off into otherworldly places. The last minute of this song is one of my favorite moments on the album. “Orbit” is a ten minute instrumental track that showcases the atmospheric side of Sun Addicted Family. Leaning heavily on ambient tones and elongated drones, it is full of melodic and impassioned moments that will draw you in from the opening sound and will fill you with copious amounts of emotional feelings. At around the seven minute mark, when the clean keyboard notes begin to play, you will again be whisked away, as this section is so beautiful to listen to. “Levitate” begins with a soft, clean guitar riff, complimented with a drum pad sound. Soon, a grandiose keyboard arrangement fills the atmosphere, providing a majority of the melody. We are also graced with more clean vocals that have a distant & dreamy sound. At about the halfway mark, the atmospheric keyboards fade away, leaving a basic guitar and keyboard sound. However, this is just a preamble to more black metal style vocals and post-metal rhythms as they pummel their way into the song. The final song on the album, “Luna” begins with great atmospheric keyboard tones and then a full on post-metal onslaught begins. The harsh vocals have a very eerie & distant feeling to them, especially when combined with the melodic styling of the music. At about the four minute mark, the music temporarily calms to a relaxing guitar riff and a memorable drum beat before picking up for one final sonic assault.

‘Solar Dreams’ is a fantastic debut album by Sun Addicted Family and it’s apparent right from the beginning, they aren’t afraid to take chances, nor are they holding anything back. No genre seems to be off limits and no form of music is safe, as it all can be manipulated and fused into an experimental and super emotional track that only Sun Addicted Family can produce. This has turned out to be one of my favorite albums to listen to so far this year and I highly recommend this for anyone that loves ambient music and metal and who also has an open mind. Please show your support for this exceptional artist and download ‘Solar Dreams’ from the link below.

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Links:

https://sunaddictedfamily.bandcamp.com

Moon And Azure Shadow Instill The Sounds Of Dungeon & Medieval Synth On Masterful Black Metal Overture.

Synthesized orchestrations have been infused with black metal for decades now, creating a sub-genre of technical and theatrical metal known as symphonic black metal. Now, I’ll be the first to admit that with the exception of a few bands, this sub-genre hasn’t really been my thing. However, after a renewed interest in dungeon synth and winter synth, I’ve come to appreciate the genre more than ever. That brings me to Moon And Azure Shadow, a one-man Black Metal project that mightily imbues the dungeon, winter, and medieval synth style into his unique brand of gothic infused black metal. The result is an incredible album of epic song lengths and robust symphonic pleasure known as ‘Age Of Darkness And Frost’. Consisting of three lengthy tracks that contain a hefty dose of black metal with a wide variety of other sounds, and four tracks of classical synth-style compositions, ‘Age Of Darkness And Frost’ is a surprisingly exceptional album that is sure to make a few “Top 10” list for 2019.

The breathtaking album opener, “Across Dark Landscapes” makes it grand entrance with an enormous symphonic auditory effect. There are so many imposing sounds on this track, it almost as if it could be used for an expeditious sequence in a movie. The cinematic quality is incredible and hearing this, I imagine a group of nomadic travelers, traversing a snowy mountain summit in search of a new place to secure as their home. As the climax of the music winds down, a beautiful piano melody can be heard, taking us to the end of this triumphant song. The next track – and first long track on the album – is the title track, “Age Of Darkness And Frost”. At almost nine minutes long, this wondrous endeavor features elements of medieval synth, gothic sounds, and very impressive symphonic black metal. Starting with another cinematic opening, it soon embraces the sound of a slow-tempo gothic anthem. The black metal-style vocals kick in and take this track to new heights. After a short melodic interlude, heavier & faster black metal rhythms take center stage and even include a section of blast beats over a canorous guitar and keyboard riff. The following track, “Black Winged Gates Of Destiny Descend” is another short respite between longer tracks but it’s no filler by any means. Theatrically, this song is monstrous and contains some chilling keyboard tones that are equally catchy. “Abyssic Lunar Tower” is the longest track on the album at seventeen and a half minutes long. The opening keyboard riff is like an addictive dirge that has a considerable sound and is soon joined by a sequenced drum beat that really sounds incredible. After a few minutes, an acoustic guitar plays a simple riff before an early-era Emperor-style Black metal riff unloads in the audial senses and makes this track even more pummeling. The riff at the six minute and twenty second mark is one of the best I’ve heard in many years and is one of the most brutal sounds on the album. At around the eleven minute mark, the song winds down to an eerie winter synth sound with a thunderstorm soundscape augmenting the ambient space in the background. A slower black metal riff soon takes over and plays out to the end of this majestic track. Next is “Through The Channelling Of Souls”, and with its medieval synth sound, provides a powerful statement with regards to the elements of nature and the darkness that conceives it. At almost eleven minutes long, “Unholy Vanquishing” begins with a ceremonious keyboard track, as if a group of warriors are preparing for a long battle in the icy cold north. Soon after, a gothic-like Black metal riff takes over and has a wonderful – but sorrowful – sound, like early Hecate Enthroned songs. This track also features some mighty voice narrations, adding yet another great element to this album. The last couple of minutes of this song is a great mix of slow-tempo black metal and dungeon synth and the vocals once again shine throughout. The final track, “Passage Through Time And Cold” features an excellent piano arrangement with some symphonic keys to add additional layers. The tone throughout this track is very melancholic and ghostly and is the perfect way to end such an amazing album. The last couple of minutes turns into an ambient soundscape with a scene of a snowy ridge and a traveler making his way to a nearby destination.

Listening to ‘Age Of Darkness And Frost’ has turned out to be such a pleasurable experience. Within a few months, I’ve gone from never hearing of Moon And Azure Shadow to including this album on my Top 10 metal albums of 2019. Even though this is a black metal album, there is enough medieval and dungeon/winter synth elements on it to be featured on The Dungeon In Deep Space site. Beside, there is a high possibility that if you’re even reading this, you’re a fan of both genres anyway. That being said, I highly recommend checking out ‘Age Of Darkness And Frost’ by clicking on the link below.

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Links:

https://moonandazureshadow.bandcamp.com/album/age-of-darkness-and-frost