Wednesday, September 10, 2014

At Dusk-"Anhedonia"

   As the dusk set, the sound of black metal filled the air and an album lay forth for all to hear. The one man black metal project from California, At Dusk, definitely presents a haunting vibe with the album, “Anhedonia.”
    The music tells lengthy dark tales filled with tortured screams from black abysses unknown. The four songs on this album are no simple black metal pieces, but long atmospheric tracks that average around fourteen minutes. There are plenty of slow drawn out crushing riffs and moments of eerie silence which are broken up by bone chilling sound effects. This style of black metal definitely takes from Burzum and Darkthrone, but travels deeper into those painful shadowy sounding musical landscapes.
    The opening track, “Anhedonia,” begins with a soothing piano piece. As the piano glides through a solemn sounding scale, dark sounds of ghostly quality begin to make their presence heard. After a while the piano fades and the loud chaotic black metal music takes over. The drums pound with aggressive force, laying down a forceful main rhythm. Following the slow ominous rhythm is a guitar riff that is recorded with massive amounts of sharp distortion. The vocals, those haunting tortured vocals, just complete the dark ambiance so darn well. As the track continues I feel as though I am being sucked into this dark world of fascination. The song changes musical directions a couple times and leaves me curios to the future possibilities that are contained on this album.
    Song two, “Agonia,” does not hesitate to jump into the chaotic black metal world. Right away the drums start building up a fast paced rhythm as the guitar and vocals sinisterly follow up. The guitar riff maintains a consistent dark edge and the chord progression tends to change tempo as the music becomes almost dreamlike in certain areas. “Agonia,” is full of unique timings and seems to travel on an endless cosmic atmosphere.
    After “Agonia” fades out, track number three, “Miseria,” silently builds up. There is an organ piece which make me instantly think of the Phantom of the Opera or some other old black and white horror movie. On this track I like how the black metal was incorporated into the haunting atmosphere. The instruments are composed really well and tell a long story of pain, suffering and misery. The final song, “Melancholia,” continues to travel along that road of epic dark sounding musical landscapes. One part during the song that really stood out was when the vocals were screaming over the chaotic black metal composition, a soft piano piece could be heard in the background. It was a pleasant musical contrast to finish this album off.
    At Dusk’s, “Anhedonia,” perfectly sums up what atmospheric black metal is all about. The music constructs endless dark landscapes of instrumental wonder and fierce musical expression. This is music that you really have to be in a certain mood for, because the purpose of this style of music is to let go all expectations and welcome the calming darkness. Also, these songs are not for the impatient mind that expects the song to be simple and straight forward. Ultimately, I recommend this album for those who are willing to suspend their preconceived musical attitudes and enter the dark seas of unknown sounding wonder.

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