Year : 2011
Genre : Black Metal
Label : Nihil Art Records
Origin : Russia
Rating : 7.3 / 10
Vestigial Existence does a diligent, acceptable job at rendering a clear picture of the ancient soul-dirt black metal seems to devotedly fixate itself upon. On paper, Frozen Ocean brings you this blackened kind of metal soaked into flammable fluids of atmospheric punishment.
On the disc, and, in reality though, this is a pretty traditional and archetypical - in the good sense of the term - black metal outing, and the only atmospheric traits it has are the opening track and some flute playing, being introduced at the latter portion of the affair. The choosing of the words is not accidental, as the flute playing herein does not ever pass through the "some flute playing" mark, indeed. Not on this record, which, nevertheless, has some very favorable offerings to entertain your ears and moods with. Read on to find out more about those.
With Vestigial Existence, Frozen Ocean addresses its thorough understanding of the genre's favorite modes of vibe invitation without any particular and/or obtrusive intention to add anything alien or new to those. The main factor herein is a pronounced, super-thick stringed section, that has not much if anything to worry if the drums have less of a presence : the percussion indeed lacks the extreme punch, but it delivers the luscious pulse with convince power and without doubt, and this exactly what the idea is.
In its character, monumental the stringed section may be, yet it does not overkill. As result of solid, sober production work, each stringed sonic cannon has its respective place and field of operation in the mix it can spout its sentiments in, while the fields themselves have a modest, nevertheless doubtlessly existent tendency to create interesting patterns of co-existent sound entities. More often than above or below it, Vestigial Existence delivers acceptably in this regard, giving you a rather efficient starting section, smuggling / hiding the tracks with relatively less efficient sections or twisted beauty in them with a good sense of balance as far as the time they are worth entertaining for.
One of the most impressive additions this album can proudly call its own, is the performance of the vocalist AND the production team, as it sounds like that the vocals are coming from beyond a huge metal door, and you do not want to confront the dude on the other side - if a dude he is, at all. He constantly reigns at the verge of losing it totally and completely, wielding an omni-present and authentic rasp to unleash declarations from an utterly, trustily disillusioned stance of contemplation with.
The compositions vary between relatively slow and medium tempo builds, this time around giving a gloomily suggested middle finger to evident intensity. The relative calmness of the spin does not take away from the quality at all, quite the contrary : it is nice to see and hear an album that dares to choose and maintain a central mood register, as each track is a variation on a similar feel, inviting a sense of coherence - that came out kind of weird - to coat the affair in.
Apart from the flutes, that have nothing else to do than to address their mere presence from time to time, and some tame sections of gloom here and there that crave cheap appreciation just to fail at it masterfully, Vestigial Existence comes to you and remains a spin you can safely hop on if you want to subject yourself to black metal done diligently and traditionally.
Rating : 7.3 / 10
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