Review:'Heathe' 'On The Tombstones, The Symbols Engraved'
- Label: 'Wolves and Vibrancy Records'
- Genre: 'Heavy Metal'
- Release Date: '30th May 2019'
‘On The Tombstones, The Symbols Engraved’ plunges the listener deep into epic doom territory, consisting of just one track with a running time of almost 40 minutes. It starts slow, and it starts heavy: a power chord hangs in suspension for an eternity while a roaring vocal scream echoes into the abyss. The build-up of layers is gradual, as strains of feedback and mournful brass enter the tumult.
The Danish act, which centres around one person and ‘an ever changing line-up’ delivers on its promise of ‘dissonance and endless repetitions’ to ‘conjure massive and overwhelming, sonic walls of reverb trenched and metallic sounding noise collages, where desperate screams shrouded in colossal aggressive energy bursts reverberate in an endless darkness’.
Arguably, my work’s already done for me, but what this fails to convey is the sense of drama and the theatricality of a band which, live, features an orchestra of up to a dozen performers, with strings, horns, guitars, drums and organs all combining to create music of galactic proportions. There’s some of the anguished melancholia of early Her Name is Calla here, but delivered with the crushing force of Swans circa 1984.
And yet as the vast convergence of sound grinds on – and on, and on, pushing a single repeated motif, it feels like the soundtrack to a galaxy decaying, slowly collapsing in on itself under the weight of matter. This is music which is post-everything: not only post-metal, or blackened post-rock, or post-doom, but music post-time, post-planetary, post-existence.