Endura - _Liber Leviathan_
(Aesthetic Death Records, 1996)
by: Andrew Lewandowski (8 out of 10)
Despite popping into the "dark ambient" scene only a short while ago, Endura have released 3 works in a year's time, and 3 of the more mature and interesting ambient albums to date, no less. _Liber Leviathan_ replaces the more gothic stylings and semi-conventional song structures of its 2 predecessors (most notably _Black Eden_, released on the amazing Red Stream label) for a sparser sound. At times, _LL_ borders on new age - somewhat in the vein of Tangerine Dream - yet retains the decrepit ambiance and occult underpinnings shared by the previous material. A more ethnic sound can be detected throughout, as Endura have also stopped their reliance on symphonic keyboards, in favor of more diverse instrumentation. The keyboards take on a more swirling and whimsical feel than before. The "leviathan" influence manifests itself through the distinctively oceanic feelings that each song invokes - particularly the final track, "Ctulhu Fhtagn", which manipulates sonar waves taken from the US Navy Oceanographic Research Survey. This results in Endura's most soothing and meditative work to date; truly a fine album to play before falling into a state of slumber.

(article published 2/1/1997)

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