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Black Autumn - Losing The Sun (2014) - Review

Band: Black Autumn
Album title: Losing The Sun
Release date: 30 September 2014
Label: Rain Without End Records

01. Losing The Sun     
02. St. Elm's Fire
03. Laetitia
04. From Whence We Came
05. The Distance
06. A Corruption Of Innocence
07. In The Rains Of June

I don't remember when was the last time that I was so dubious about an album like in this case with Black Autumn's Losing The Sun. On one hand it has all the necessary ingredients that should appeal to my taste, but on the other side I don't know if I like it how it's executed, and yet that's not all... I've made so many spins and there are moments that I like very much, especially when being taken away by its dark melancholic guitar driven vibe, but sometimes I have a feeling that the songs are cut off just at that decisive point where everything should reach a higher level of aesthetics.

Ok, Black Autumn is one of so many one-man bands playing atmospheric, yet very melancholic version of black/doom metal with many elements targeting into ambiental, post-rock and so called metalgaze waters. The German band was formed back in 1995 as duo playing black metal in the vein of Emperor, Satyricon and Ulver, then it took a lot of years until the first album, Ecstasy, Nightmare, Doom, was released in 2007, followed by Rivers Of Dead Leaves in 2008, Aurora - Morgen Rothe im Auffgang in 2010 and Ghosts At Our Windows in 2011. Now more than three years later another chapter is written by Losing The Sun, and those who know the band from before already know what to expect, still, Black Autumn's mastermind M. Krall takes his sounds some steps further by adding a lot more of melody in the sole song structures.

As soon as the album starts with the title track we get immersed into its peculiar world of sadness and kind of melancholical perfection. I know that fans of those sounds will be overwhelmed by a stunning guitar job, simple yet efective drumming and distant depressive, but kind of average black metal vocals. Nice layers of atmospheric synths and piano touches are filling the background in an elegant manner. There are occasional typical black metal outbursts, but mostly everything is based on slow to mid paced melodic metalgaze and some post-rock passages. It can be said that Losing The Sun is an instrumental album in its core, even vocals when utilized work just as one of the instruments. The emphasis is on beautiful guitar riffs, nice leads and well crafted passages between slow, sometimes fast and some acoustic moments, just listen to the amazing "Laetitia" where everything seems to be at the right place. Another highlight comes with the most elaborated song up here, "The Distance", where Krall makes some experiments with depressive psychedelic-electronic additions and dark ambiental acoustic atmospheres combined with almost solemn very dense and melodic gloomy doom metal and in this way shows all the potential of his compositional skills.

The rest of the album is floating somewhere in between before mentioned things, it has a power to seduce but at a certain point there's a glitch in my opinion, like I said in the first paragraph. When you already think and expect to be taken away by the mesmerizing flow filled with melancholia, Black Autumn cuts it off, just like if he didn't want to reach kind of climax that could give a cherry on the cake, and that thing happens too often. I believe that it is M. Krall's intention to do it this way and to make the things a bit more experimental, but for my taste it doesn't work that well. Otherwise Losing The Sun is a great album and those who enjoy dark melodic guitar lines have plenty of those, but as well if you are into any kind of depressive sounds than don't let this album pass by. It comes with a nice, rough production, giving a certain depth to each song, but I think that Black Autumn should also make some re-arrangements with the vocals on the future outputs and with this adding even some more atmosphere.

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