Release DetailsLABEL Cursed Productions
RELEASED ON 4/11/2005
Aphotic / Dusk
To Find New Darkness / The Slumber (Split CD)
posted on 4/2005 By:
Interesting split album this one. Basically, Aphotic is the band formed by members of the now defunct Dusk. Last year, Aphotic released Stillness Grows, a compilation of their three intruiging demos, which was a solid doom effort. Dusk, for those that don’t know, were a band once considered as great as Morgion within the US doom scene as their Majestic Thou In Ruin was somewhat of a landmark in US doom metal. The Dusk material on this split is their final unreleased material from 1997.
To Find New Darkness, the first four songs by Aphotic, are not too different from their Stillness Grows effort; the tracks are generally shorter and more to the point with a slightly upbeat tempo rather than the usual drawn out dirges of the genre. To say this band’s material compares to the Finnish death/doom scene (Rapture, Insomnium, Slumber) or even Katatonia and Sentenced is not a reach at all. Of course, being a singular recording, unlike the collective nature of Stillness Grows, the recording is more consistent and the songs flow more coherently and are also aided by real drums instead of the prior programming. The generally mid paced, synth flocked sound is melodically morose and despondent but isn’t the deeper ‘woe is me’ dirge like tones of true doom metal, but a more delicate gossamer take on depressive music. The only problem is that Aphotic’s four (“Crystallized”, “Spade”, “Sea”, “All We Have Is This...”), tracks all sound a little similar with the same steadfast, crisp sound with snarly mid pitched vocals and a few adequate clean breaks. Actually, the vocals are the weak point as with a more prominent growl, the music could be far more effective and emotional. Still, Aphotic are a band most certainly worthy of a bigger record deal as they show an intelligent and eloquent take on doom metal that should be a welcome break from the onslaught of metalcore and brutal death metal.
Dusk’s final recording entitled The Slumber is 5 lengthier, more traditional doom songs that span the more expansive side of atmospheric misery. The slightly weaker recording saps some of the atonal depression from the material, but within its slowly beating heart, Dusk were/are a crushingly depressive outfit on par with My Dying Bride and such. Dusk’s forte is lumbering riffs laced with wide open segments of often acoustic, somber introspection. Surprisingly, the second track “Steal My Soul” is a three minute bruiser, but gives way to the delicate harmonies, chants and eventual rumble of “The Slumber”, a track that should appeal to fans of modern doom -mongers Pantheist. Vocally, the deep growls are more ominous and the clean chants (also used by Aphotic) are more threatening and suit a menacingly heavy track like “Perpetual Shrieks”. “Moonbeams” is reminiscent of their Majestic…. album with an acoustic intro and massive climax that will bring most doom fans to their knees despite the thin production.
Basically, this release serves as an interesting, interlinking effort of two intertwined bands that’s a sort of a past/present presentation of one core band. Either way, Dusk were the past herald of US doom, and Aphotic appear to be the future.
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