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Terra Relicta Top 20 Of 2017

01. Au Champ Des Morts
- Dans La Joie
02. Peter Bjärgö
- Animus Retinentia
03. Phallus Dei
- Black Dawn
04. Saille
- Gnosis
05. Black Anvil
- As Was
06. Heretoir
- The Circle
07. Last Leaf Down
- Bright Wide Colder
08. Bitterfeldt
- Götzen.Dämmerung
09. Elegi
- Bånsull
10. Isenordal
- Shores Of Mourning


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Bitterfeldt - Götzen.Dämmerung (2017) - Review

Band: Bitterfeldt
Album title: Götzen.Dämmerung
Release date: 24 March 2017
Label: Massacre Records

01. Nordlicht
02. Arktus
03. Eines Tages
04. Anatole
05. Zauberland
06. Mesembria
07. Fiebertraum
08. Dysis
09. Unendlich
10. Epilog: art.zero
11. Nocturnus I [bonus]
12. Nocturnus II [bonus]

If anybody of you wondered what on earth happened with legendary German gothic metal band EverEve after the album Tried & Failed, released in 2005, and where did the musicians vanished, here's a partial answer, EverEve's frontman and mastermind Michael (known also under the artistic nickname MZ Eve 51), has a new band named Bitterfeldt. Bitterfeldt was formed in 2012 by Micha and his friend Sascha who's known from the band G.A.U., the two are supported on this debut album of theirs by some extraordinary musicians like ex-Crematory guitaris Matze, EverEve bassist Oliver and Heaven Shall Burn' drummer Christian Bass. As well they got help by sound artists Sascha Dürk (multiple winner of the Future Music Award) and André Höche. Now, as the Bitterfeldt's debut Götzen.Dämmerung is ready to be unleashed upon mankind, expect nothing but apocalyptic sound to feed your inner demons.

Götzen.Dämmerung is an ode to end-time, a true artistic escapade of soul consuming darkness that has almost nothing to do with anything this musicians did before. This stuff is heavy and claustrophobic, quite cinematic, in here there's no light, even though these compositions are fully emotionally charged. The album has an interesting structure, it comprises of five lenghty tracks that are divided between each other by short ambiental/cinematic grisly interludes. The sound is very dense, sometimes almost perverse, but throughout haunting and dramatic. It's difficult to really classify it into any genre, but for sure it's doomy, decadent, it has some kind of post-industrial smell, gothy ambiances, but what prevails can be best described as claustrophobic sound cascades. The expressive force of these tracks is beyond anything you might have heard lately, Micha's way of singing is so very impetuous, blasphemous, violent, but also so very emotive that gives shivers down the spine, nothing alike to what you were used to hear in EverEve. Still it has nothing to do with death or black metal, even though in a strange way it might be heavier and darker than most of death and black metal albums released lately, can you imagine it?

Already the first track, "Nordlicht", in my opinion one of the best up here, offers kind of slowly progressing wall of sound, sinister but quite catchy melody, driving and strong doomy guitar riffs, pounding bass lines and punishing drums that leaves the listener with open mounth. With well used electronic samples and synths the band deepens the atmosphere greatly, best heard when the gentle piano touches soften the ambiance so well for example in "Eines Tages", but also everywhere else when utilized. Micha and Sascha are not afraid to use some dissonant riffs and make some experimentations that manifest in some welcoming mood changes that break the monotony and add a lot to the dynamics of the tracks, just listen for example how this is done in before mentioned dramatic track "Eines Tages" or in thumping, with some tribalistic percussion, yet very ambiental composition named "Zauberland", which at certain parts reaches the borders of doom/death metal. In the music of Bitterfeldt the attentive listener, even though this is in its essence dark metal, with a strong emphasis on the word "dark", will find also tiny elements that reminds a bit to Lacrimosa, Rammstein or even to Diary Of Dreams, but still the overall sound is far from being compared with them, this just shows how very versatile this music is.

The opening part of epic "Fiebertraum" is very melancholic and cinematic manifestation of inner fears, throughout toying with listeners senses in such a mesmerizing way before it explodes into such an intensive and abyssal way. Before Götzen.Dämmerung ends the last proper track awaits, another storm of lush sonic nihilism and decadence, but this time based on much more traditional doom metal with some psychedelic elements, horror rock and theatrical gothic additions. The story ends with a short epilog and the one who dares to take this more than 50 minutes long dark journey together with Bitterfeldt will remain breathless in the end.

Bitterfeldt's debut is vital food for those who want to embrace the darkness in its most primal form, it's full of agony and passion, but in a strange way it's beautiful, somehow I can say also mesmerizing and addictive. With great production where every detail matters and with nice artwork this album offers an extraordinary sonic and as well visual experience. Also lyrics in German that deal with Nietzsche's philosophy are a vital part of the musical and textual concept of Götzen.Dämmerung. Those who will get the digipack CD edition of the album will be granted with two bonus tracks. Götzen.Dämmerung is a not to be missed work of dark art. Bitterfeldt is eternal night, an apocalyptic atmosphere in word, vision and sound of end-time.

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

Recommended by Terra Relicta

Band: Spine
Album title: Continue To Exist
Release date: 9 September 2016
Label: Shortwave Transmissions

Herbst9 should by now be a well known name among fans of dark ambient. Henry Emich's side project, Spine, will not fail to enamour fans of Herbst9. There are a plethora of similiarities between the two projects. It is hard to really describe the differences between the two projects, save the absence of Frank Merten, the other half of Herbst9. Continue To Exist delivers many of the hallmark sounds that brought Herbst9 to fame. The deep reverberations that take the mind to foreign realms. The exquisite use of field recordings to spice up the atmosphere. The slightly disturbing, yet almost peaceful spoken word sections. The celestial feminine vocals which float throughout the mix. All of these things lead the listener into another world, a place and time which is infinitely foreign, yet somehow familiar, to the modern being.

Read a full review HERE