Dolorian - _Voidwards_
(Avantgarde, 2006)
by: Pedro Azevedo (8 out of 10)
_Voidwards_ seems to begin pretty much where its self-titled predecessor left off some five years ago; but then as the Finns themselves state, they intend this to be an album without beginning or end, past or future. They describe _Voidwards_ as an hour-long journey of detachment from mundane matters, and the music on offer is certainly suitable for promoting the isolation and alienation of the listener from the world around him.

As you can probably gather from the above, _Voidwards_ isn't exactly full of catchy choruses, riffs or melodies. In fact, there's absolutely none of that. Each composition is in no rush to go anywhere in particular, which is not to say that they are devoid of musical structure; just don't get impatient waiting for something radically different to take place. Nevertheless, there's still the contrast between the bleak mixture of distorted string plucking and spoken or whispered vocals and the occasional section featuring heavy, plodding guitars and snarled or growled vocals. There continues to be no singing as such, and no upbeat or catchy sections. Also relevant to the overall result is the very strong and prevalent atmospheric component, even though in reality it is often implied and suggested rather than shoved down the listener's ears. Most of the time it is all still punctuated by the same kind of relatively understated percussion.

This is Dolorian's third album and the second effort where they excel at creating some uncompromisingly bleak atmospheric doom. It will certainly not appeal to a mainstream metal audience, and if you're not in the right frame of mind, it can seem as exciting as watching paint dry even before you're midway through the disc. For those who will be able to fully appreciate what Dolorian are aiming for here however, _Voidwards_ is definitely worth getting. It lacks a track as outstanding as its predecessor's "Blue Unknown" to take it yet another step further, and ultimately I don't find it an improvement over the last album; but it is still an accomplished continuation of the band's lonesome yet praiseworthy path.


(article published 20/7/2006)

9/1/2002 P Azevedo 9 Dolorian - Dolorian
6/15/1999 P Azevedo 8 Dolorian - When All the Laughter Has Gone
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