Darkness Eternal - _Misanthropic Annihilation_
(Autopsy Kitchen Records, 2005)
by: T. DePalma (7.5 out of 10)
Of the few one-man acts in death metal, Darkness Eternal stands unparalleled, but not confined to its niche, giving caution to ensembles throughout the genre's sulphur tomb. Maestro George Valaetis' sequel to 2001's _Satanchrist_ weaves fevered patterns of the same: lengthy constructs of clean six-string rhythms crawling on stacks of BC Rich flavored crunch. Each track sweeping away trails to escape in intricate forlorn passages. Gloomy melodies overrun frequent time changes heavily influenced by the schools of Incantation, Immolation and The Chasm, but contain their own internal vision and spirit.

Unfortunately, this attention to craft and detail is struck by a frequent happenstance of underground soloists -- fairly stunted by production, with Valaetis and Bob Moore (Nile) working to give _Misanthropic Annihilation_ a sound, less sanguine perhaps, but near to Sunlight Studios. A warmly padded sound, favorable to the melodic edge of most tracks. Most noticeably, there's a fallout between the drums and guitars, the latter either dangling in hollow space with little back up at all or the former sounding mechanically inserted ("Unholy Trinity"), deadening the momentum carried by the strings. Even though such textures complement tracks rooted in that early Scandinavian vibe (the Hypocrisy tinged "Thy Will Be Done"), its monotonous push could turn off some listeners.

Not radically different from previous material, this album treads the nervous borders of doom with technical strength and incisive melody, as if translating nocturnes through the electric void. A unique combination worth bearing some missteps for.

Contact: http://www.darknesseternal.com

(article published 29/1/2006)

2/24/2006 T DePalma Darkness Eternal: His Will Be Done
1/14/2002 A Bromley 7.5 Darkness Eternal - Satanchrist
8/12/2000 A Bromley 6.5 Darkness Eternal - Dawn of the Suffering
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