This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

Please consider supporting this website by disabling your ad-blocker. This website does not use audio ads, pop-ups, or other annoyances. And please support Terra Relicta by giving a little donation if you can! Thank you!!!

Random album

Soul Dissolution - Stardust (2018) - Review

Band: Soul Dissolution
Album title: Stardust
Release date: 25 March 2018
Label: Black Lion Records

01. Vision
02. Circle Of Torment
03. Stardust
04. Mountain Path
05. The Last Farewell
06. Far Above The Boiling Sea Of Life

In the recent fload of post-black metal and atmospheric black metal bands some bands do stand out from the mediocrity and one of them is absolutely the Belgian duo Soul Dissolution. Quite a newcommer to the scene already caused a stir among the fans of the genre with their fantastic debut, Pale Distant Light, which was released two years ago. Now on the hells of their first full-length Soul Dissolution comes back with a new offering named Stardust, and with it they only confirm that they are not just a passing fancy. Soul Dissolution were formed in 2012 and their first release was a five track demo named Cold Rays And Grey Waves which came out in 2014.

Now, if we could have sensed a huge influence from bands like Alcest, Agalloch, and early Katatonia on their debut album, it seems that Soul Dissolution found their own expression on Stardust. Although their innitial influences are still heard and we still can't talk about some excessive originality here, the new album feels a bit more consistent, even though on detriment to loose some of that initial spark and broadening characteristics of their sound that made Pale Distant Light somehow very enjoyable and pleasantly sparse. The sound is now reshaped, Soul Dissolution now sound less depressive and more post-metal than before, the tracks are a bit faster, the drilling rhythmic lines are stronger, a new comparison, if we must search for some, can be found in Harakiri For The Sky and to some extent also in Deafhaven, Wolves In The Throne Room and even in Forgotten Tomb.

Starting with a fantastic cinematic intro, the two guys already with the first proper track "Circle Of Torment" show what is the deal this time. The key elements from the first album are still here, very effective semi shrieking vocals got more depth, long driving melodic guitar lines are even more elaborate, and the pace or mood changes are performed a bit more smoothly. The four proper tracks on this album are quite long, between seven and ten minutes, but it doesn't get boring for a second, they know how to make the listener interested with these breaks and highly captivating melodies, plus there are many parts with atmospheric synths that add another dimension to the already dense, emotionally charged and rich sound, just listen for example to the album title track. The vocals could be a bit more varied in my opinion, even though that the two try to make it more dynamic with some combinations with death metal growls, but they could use this approach more often as it certainly works out, or at least put some clean ones like they did on the debut.

Stardust is in the first place a post-black metal album with some additions of atmospheric black metal and even post-rock and traditional heavy metal. That's perfectly heard on the last track, "Far Above The Boiling Sea Of Life". The melancholic feeling is constantly present and the songs are enough dynamic and interesting to suck you into their obscure universe. While being emerged into those lush atmospheric throughout melodic soundscapes you'll encounter also some well inserted blasting rhythms that invigorates the whole thing. A big plus is also much better sound quality this time, everything is a bit more clear and it has more depth and power. The main composer and multiinstrumetalist Jabawock, together with main vocalist Acharan, certainly know how to make an interesting record, they might have lost some of that vivaciousness from their debut, if I can say so considering all the depressive mood, but have certainly found a trajectory line that suits them well.

All in all, Soul Dissolution did one of the most captivating and mesmerizing atmospheric post-black metal albums released lately, and those of you who weren't satisfied with the latest effort of Harakiri For The Sky have in these two guys a new candidate for a new favorite musical act out there. Stardust is a wild but also unforgettable journey into the dark sonic skies, a bit too short in my opinion, but it certainly has a big replay value. A big thumbs up to the Swedish label Black Lion Records for this new addition to their already great roster of bands.

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