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DeepDark - Human Corrosion (2016) - Review

Band: DeepDark
Album title: Human Corrosion
Release date: 16 June 2016
Label: Nox Ov Abraxas

01. Human Corrosion
02. Dead Hope
03. The Sewer
04. Voice Of The Chaos
05. Silence Of Trees
06. The Transformation Featuring Ugasanie
07. Rotten Veins (bonus)

DeepDark is a relative new-comer to the scene of dark ambient. Erebos Dark, who resides deep in the frozen northern expanses of Russian Siberia, has hit the genre by storm in 2016 with an array of different releases, with a mulitude of labels and contributing artists. Just to name a few there have been splits and/or collaborations with: Psionic Asylum, Breinskam, and Arctica. DeepDark has shown his ability to manipulate sounds pushing them into increasingly dark and varied corners of the musical spectrum.

Human Corrosion is the first release by DeepDark on the fledgling label, Nox Ov Abraxas. With their first six albums revealed or released in the last few months, it looks like DeepDark is one of the better known names giving the label a boost. Focusing on quality over quantity, Nox Ov Abraxas have released DeepDark Human Corrosion on 333 hand-numbered digipaks.

DeepDark has been known to me by his style of space ambient and his impressive workload over the last few months. It has been hard finding the right time and album by him to review, but Human Corrosion, being a physical full-length solo release by a fledgling label seemed the most appropriate. The first thing that stands out to me about Human Corrosion is its field recording heavy, in-your-face format. I have often in the past felt that DeepDark was just barely missing the mark, having tracks which were finely tuned and well produced, but just a bit passive energetically. When showing oneself as a new face in an increasingly saturated scene it is important to stand out from the crowd in some way. "The Sewer" made its debut on the Black Mara Records compilation Gorgons Tale. This track immediately caught my attention as a step in the right direction for DeepDark. The heavy use of field recordings, atmospheric depth, and muffled demonic voices all worked together to create a superior track, one with plenty  of memorable moments.

Human Corrosion progresses from beginning to end with this same motif: darker, more activity, more field recordings, and an overall sinister presence. With the average track coming in at around nine minutes in length, DeepDark gives the listener plenty of time to settle into each section of his opus. Letting the story slowly unravel in front of the listener, keeps it meditative yet doesn't fall into prolonged patterns of repetition or inactivity. The occasional vocal input helps build on this sense of an active presence. Looking to "The Transformation" which features the brilliant Russian snow-whisperer Ugasanie, what unfolds is a dark sinister tale, one that feels as cold as the lands in which these men reside. An organic feel takes the forefront, native instrumentation is used, accompanied by the voice of an old man, telling some story in a tongue which I cannot understand (presumably Russian). The track slowly descends into a thick atmospheric soundscape, with the sense of fear and isolation never leaving the periphery.

On Human Corrosion, DeepDark has made a solid step in the right direction. Sometimes quality over quantity is important, yet for less established artist in this new age of digital music, it can be a balancing act between staying relevant and giving oneself the opportunities needed to move forward, and over-saturating the market with ones own brand. While DeepDark has been coming dangerously close to the latter over the last year, Human Corrosion is the solid release needed to build up his name and reputation. From what I have seen the packaging appears to be well made and thoughtfully designed. Having this physical release through a younger label will hopefully be able to offer DeepDark the time and energy needed to solidify his name on the roster of dark ambient artists who should be given a second look. I would recommend Human Corrosion to dark ambient fans who are looking for something lively and sinister yet a bit more reserved and refined in sonic dynamics. Let Erebos Dark's cold Siberian aura take over your soul with Human Corrosion, and keep an eye on the young but promising Nox Ov Abraxas label.

Review written by: Michael
Rating: 7.5/10