Asklepia - _Cold of Solitude_
(BadMoodMan Music / Solitude Productions, 2009)
by: Quentin Kalis (5.5 out of 10)
The so-called and redundant DSBM subgenre barely existed a decade ago, but has since evolved into its own, complete with stylistic conventions and formulae. The parent label is well-acquainted with the style, and Asklepia's inclusion on the limited edition and largely experimental Art of Silence series is probably due to the inferior and rough recording quality, which is acceptable for a demo, but embarrassing for an album proper. They stick to all the musical conventions of the genre, adopting a Shining-esque sound with a nod to Burzum replete with acoustic arpeggios, background synth and slow, lumbering riffs. It's simplistic, repetitive with little variation in either mood or tempo, and lacking in originality. The sole deviation from this template are the vocals at the beginning, delivered in a typically Slavic groan, which sadly is not sustained throughout the album. Despite this litany and a reluctance to venture beyond the borders of the Land of One Idea, it's surprisingly listenable. It's not something that will be listened to after the World Cup, but the endearingly rough compositions and some catchy mournful melodies ensures this will suffice in a pinch.


(article published 2/4/2010)

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