Aphotic / Dusk - _To Find New Darkness / The Slumber_
(Cursed Productions, 2005)
by: Pedro Azevedo (8 out of 10)
Aphotic's first foray into split releases is an unusual one, as all three members of Aphotic play on both the EPs that make up the disc. In addition to Aphotic's own _To Find New Darkness_, which is a collection of songs recorded in 2004, the listener gets Dusk's _The Slumber_ EP (1997).

If you are a regular reader of Chronicles of Chaos, then you will have probably already read an article or three about Aphotic. There isn't a great deal of news to report on their atmospheric, doomy death metal; if you know their recent material, then you already know what to expect, and _To Find New Darkness_ certainly does not disappoint. If you've never heard them, then you're missing out on one of America's brightest and least recognized talents in atmospheric death metal -- but fortunately they aren't letting that get in the way of their music. Aphotic continue to shun trends and produce honest, well balanced atmospheric death metal of a very high standard. For this recording the band went back to using a drum machine, but with material for a full-length already in the works, they plan on recruiting a human drummer again. Perhaps this time a bigger label with a wider distribution reach will pick them up -- it certainly wouldn't be happening a minute too soon, considering all they've done so far.

Incidentally, what they've done so far includes several years working under the name Dusk. _The Slumber_, which constitutes the second half of this split, was the band's final release before breaking up in 1998. Compared to Aphotic, there's less atmospheric death and more doom/death in their sound, making no secret of its mid-'90s origin. Although there are significant differences between the two bands, Dusk clearly showed signs of the same kind of talent that currently drives Aphotic. Furthermore, this change in style (but not so much in feeling) works well within the split CD, as Dusk's more bludgeoning and organic approach contrasts with the somewhat more atmospheric inclination of Aphotic's material. Nevertheless, Dusk also utilize some atmospheric passages of their own, as well as acoustic guitar breaks and occasional clean vocals to excellent effect -- _The Slumber_ is by no means filler material here and fully ensures the consistency of this split.

Very nicely packaged and presented, this split CD is a worthwhile addition to the collection of anyone interested in the genre. Provided they get a chance however, I reckon Aphotic's finest hour is definitely still to come.

Contact: http://www.aphoticdeath.com

(article published 24/5/2005)

7/29/2004 P Azevedo 8 Aphotic - Stillness Grows
4/12/2002 A McKay 9 Dusk - Mourning... Resurrect
3/21/2003 P Azevedo 5 Aphotic - Stillness Grows
1/14/2002 D Rocher 5 Aphotic - Under Veil of Dark
1/10/2001 D Rocher 5 Aphotic - Aphotic
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