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Terra Relicta Top 20 Of 2017



01. Ulver -
The Assassination Of Julius Caesar
02. Au Champ Des Morts -
Dans La Joie
03. Isenordal -
Shores Of Mourning
04. Heretoir -
The Circle
05. Peter Bjärgö -
Animus Retinentia
06. Au-Dessus -
End Of Chapter
07. Northumbria -
Markland
08. Shibalba -
Psychostasis-Death Of Khat
09. Cult Of Erinyes -
Tiberivs
10. Saille -
Gnosis

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Random album

Agael - Trost (2014) - Review

Band: Agael
Album title: Trost
Release date: 25 February 2014
Label: Naturmacht Productions

Tracklist:
01. Sternenklang
02. Staubherrscher
03. Weltenschrei
04. Ewige Heimkehr
05. Menschensohn
06. Zeitenwind
07. Trost
08. Nichtkonstanten

Imagine the atmospheric side of Burzum, mixed with early Anathema, then add a pinch or two of Alcest from Écailles De Lune and out of this comes Agael. Trost is the second full-lenght for this German one-man band, successor to Hybris which was released five years ago. I must be honest and confess that Trost is my first encounter with Agael and I can't make any comparisons between the two albums, but as stated in press info sheet, Trost is more atmospheric and melodic. That's what you get with it, a lot of nice melodies, huge atmospheric soundscapes, but also raw black metal escapades. Trost must be also considered as lyrically conceptual album, it's one artistic long poem written by Agael himself which criticizes modern society with a special emphasis on how we as humans interact with our changing world.

There's no doubt that Agael is a very talented musician, and not only, he has proved himself as an extraordinary song composer, as most of the songs have kind of special pathos that with ease takes you out of body and mind. He has shown that he knows how to blend together melancholic melodies with harsh, almost diabolic aggression, but please, don't take me wrong, this album is not that aggressive in terms of music, instead this is hidden within the sole nature of Trost. It's easy to get lost for example within gentle ambiances of "Staubherrscher" combined with painful shrieks and rare clean vocals, not to mention how soul hurts when the sound of flute deepens the ambiance and opens even more the wound of the suffering soul of mankind, 

There are many post-rock moments, then again it's pretty close to some shoegaze, yet it's depressive and on different occasions and many times when everything slows down, guitars for example reminds a lot to those on Serenades, debut of Anathema. But afterall Trost's music remains black metal in its core, many would call it blackgaze or something like that, but I think that's just partially right. Sometimes like from nowhere a gentle piano in the distance caresses the agitated malevolent spirit, yet Agael knows how to keep the suspense with some dark ambient inputs and other experimentations, just listen to "Menschensohn" and how interesting is the female speech in it, or how depressive is the background scenery in "Zeitenwind". Then again how unbeliveable haunting is the combination of dark ambiances and Alcest-ian guitar lines in the album title track. I don't know but something in the conclusive instrumental track "Nichtkonstanten" reminds me so much to USA based electronic/ambient act Impurfekt, of course I believe that this is just a coincidence as the two are stylistically far away from each other.

I can't forget to mention synth job which brings the necessary darkness in the picture. Then well played, but unfortunately poorly produced drums, together with German lyrics add a certain hardness to Agael's sound. There are also some flaws and one of the them is in my opinion the opener "Sternenklang" with its typical German black metal style, yet some acoustic insertions make it bereable enough. Yes, Trost is a very good effort and with just a bit better and not so dry, very unpolished production could be a masterpiece, even if, at the second thought that could eradicate that special underground essence of Agael.

Review written by: T.V.
Rating: 7,5/10

Recommended by Terra Relicta

Band name: Aythis
Album title: The Illusion And The Twin
Release date: 6 January 2016
Label: Orcynia Records

Aythis is the solo project of Carline Van Roos, also known for her work in Lethian Dreams and Remembrance. Unlike her other projects, Aythis is a neo-classical ambient experience with slow soundscapes and melancholic whispered vocals peppered with piano, acoustic guitar, and cello, among other instrumentation. The overall composition paints a vivid picture, without needing a helping hand from some dense narrative. Carline's talents are ever present here in all aspects from the music and ambiance to the pristine vocals, to the desperately melancholic lyrics. The Illusion And The Twin is the perfect companion to a cold lonely evening when the listener wishes to be immersed in a comfortingly haunting blanket of darkness.

Read a full review HERE