Funeralium - _Funeralium_
(Total Rust Records, 2007)
by: Quentin Kalis (8 out of 10)
The debut from this French "extreme doom" project includes members borrowed from black metal bands Ataraxie and Hyadningar. There is little resemblance to either of these two bands. The only similarity lies in the despairing screams occasionally employed by the vocalist, not unlike his Vikernian screams on Hyadningar's debut -- but these are more like the howling shrieks of despair that permeate Abruptum's cacophonous missives. Most of the time, low-pitched vocals are used, not at all like his work with Hyadningar.

Abruptum is again invoked with their liking for low-pitched guitars, but the reader need not worry too much, as there is far greater focus on song structure. Not that this would be picked up on a first listen: the four real songs each last between fifteen to twenty minutes (book-ended by an intro and outro, both of which act as directionless, superfluous generators of atmosphere). The songs progress at an agonisingly slow pace, making it all too easy for minds to wonder and aspects overlooked. Although the doomy guitar riffs are not drawn out to the extremes of, say, Beyond Black Void, they are imbued with such a lack of urgency that one could potentially lose interest before the completion of the first riff! The drums are suitably minimalist, to the extent that anyone with a year's training could easily perform the drum patterns -- but then this "extreme doom" is not designed for or intended to be an exhibition of percussive virtuosity.

As with the drone and funeral subgenres of doom, this will only appeal to those who will have a taste for stripped down doom proceeding at glacial speed. You will like it, or you will not. There is no middle ground.


(article published 3/10/2007)

5/12/2013 C Drishner 6.5 Funeralium - Deceived Idealism
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