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Terra Relicta Top 20 Of 2016



01. The Human Voice - Silent Heart
02. Trees Of Eternity
- Hour Of The Nightingale
03. Darkher
- Realms
04. Aeon Sable
- Hypaerion
05. The Foreshadowing
- Seven Heads Ten Horns
06. NU:N
- Naked Until Noema
07. Cryo Chamber Collaboration
- Nyarlathotep
08. In The Woods...
- Pure
09. Klimt 1918
- Sentimentale Jugend
10. Terra Tenebrosa
- The Reverses

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Random album

Fen - Dustwalker (2013) - Review

Band: Fen
Album title: Dustwalker
Release date: 21 January 2013
Label: Code666 Records

Tracklisting:
01. Consequence
02. Hands Of Dust
03. Spectre
04. Reflections
05. Wolf Sun
06. The Black Sound
07. Walking The Crowpath
08. Epilogue [special edition bonus]

All those who are familiar with British band Fen already know that this isn't going to be an easy listen. The third studio album, after highly appreciated debut The Malediction Fields from 2009 and a little bit dissapointing successor Epoch, Fen returns with Dustwalker, an epic voyage through windswept and desolate landscape of England's Fen region, from where the band gets most of the inspiration. Yes, it's time to sit back and get fully concetrated on this album, otherwise you can loose almost everything that this album offers.

Fen doesn't make anything new regarding the musical genre, as like many other post-black metal bands they implement many genres into their aggressive and bleak musical expression, from atmospheric post-rock, shoegaze elements, progressive grips, folk influences and much more, still the sound remains strong, raging and sometimes it reaches the point that even all "true" black metallers can't remain indifferent. What starts with a song "Consequence" reminds of USA masters Agalloch, but still with Fen's own note, dissonance and great melodic passages, accompanied with shrieking, yet atmospheric and understandable vocals, that blend so well with, that typical Alcest kind of clean singing. The song is an amazing introduction into what follows and already shows that the band has broadened up their sonic output. Just listen how strong is the conclusion of this opening track. Then my favourites,... "Hands Of Dust" is a dreamy, more than eleven minutes long epic adventure. Great acoustic lines, emotional vocals and atmospheres that you won't forget so easily. The track builds slowly and is becoming more and more intense, until it reaches the ultimate climax. It's like an elaborate and well thought scream of pain. Vocal job on this one reminded me of Tiamat from Clouds or Wildhoney. The third one "Spectre" is a step away from metal music, as it offers typical 70's influenced prog rock, somehow similar to what Opeth did on Heritage. There are a lot of hidden things in this one, but what impresses the most is its ending, where the band serves one of the most thrilling moments of the album, the guitar work here reminded me to Anathema from their Eternity era. The beginning of "Wolf Sun" is a kick in the face with its black n' roll, a bit punkish, kinda later Darkthrone part, but it soon transform into more progressive and complex output. What represents best this album and Fen's musical direction are last two tracks "The Black Sound" and the longest track up here, more than thirteen minutes long "Walking The Crowpath". Every single before mentioned element is blended into one dark substance, it's black metal, but at the same time Fen are far away from typical black metal band, probably too complex or demanding and if you are not completely devoted into the songs you will not get rewarded by the greatness of those vehement and intense compositions. I can't help but notice also a slight resemblance with the likes as Wolwes In The Throne Room and A Forest Of Stars. Uh, those guitar lines can't get out of my head... On some editions you'll get also a bonus instrumental track "Epilogue", the thing that I don't understand, as this is just a simple conclusion of one great album and should be on all formats.

As those 65 minutes end it's time to rest and reflect upon this masterwork. It really offers a lot for a broad auidience, not only for fans of black metal. Dustwalker is an evident progression in the bands career, the only thing that could be done better is in my opinion the production, because it's blury, but on the other hand it gives some kind of magic. Dustwalker is a passionate, yet very melancholic and intriguing album that must be consumed by everybody who is not afraid of a little bit more exacting listening experience.

Review written by: T.V.
Rating: 8,5/10

Recommended by Terra Relicta

Band: Alphaxone
Album title: Absence Of Motion
Release date: 25 August 2015
Label: Cryo Chamber

Alphaxone reaches into a whole new dimension with Absence Of Motion. Within seconds of listening it is apparent that he is stepping outside his comfort zone this time around. This album is significantly more cinematic than his previous releases. I would even go so far as to say it reminds me at times of Sabled Sun. This is a cinematic experience much like that of Sabled Sun, in that we seem to be following a protagonist through the album from first encounter with a new life form to the final ascent into deep space. Every second of this album is full of life: organic, synthetic, or a war between the two. Absence Of Motion is a thrilling ride. Absence Of Motion may be portraying an alien abduction or the use of futuristic machinery we can only begin to phathom, the full interpretation is up to the individual. This is an easy listen compared to some other releases in the genre, with the intensity and bass levels only soaring at moments giving the listener time to relax and reflect upon all the otherworldly wonders this Absence Of Motion has to offer. A masterpiece by Alphaxone that is sure to resonate for some time!

Read a full review HERE