Thergothon's super-slow doom had its own disciples in the 2000s.
wed the demonic vocals of a female singer (Emilie Bresson) with
catatonic beats, basically stretching each riff to the limit of human tolerance.
The three colossal agonies of the double-disc 666 (Solitude, 2005),
A missile of feedback rips repeatedly through the lethargic pace of
Dead Men Tell No Tales (14:08), setting the stage for the vocalist's
desperate shriek amid zombie-like lumbering beats.
Slow-burning guitars and elephantiac beats punctuate the vocalist's
cries from hell in the endless expressionistic kammerspiel of
Somewhere Below the Devil is Laughing (36:35). The soliloquy gets
catatonic and subhuman, but one waits in vain for some sort of resolution:
there is no end to agony, and the ending is merely a bit more emphatic.
For eleven minutes Les Lumieres Have Been Blown Out (35:14)
is even slower, a distant rumble, and silent; then the rumble gets louder
and the guitar begins riffing in earnest; and by minute 18 the shriek is
beginning to surface through the cracks of the monolithic plodding. Melody
pops up around minute 21 and finally the music and the vocals explode
(basically there was a 23 minute calvary-like introduction to the "song").
This is less of a vocalist's show than a collective implosion. Suddenly
the music spirals down into pure industrial noise.
The two blurred and disjointed dirges of Speak Of The Sea (Throne, 2006)
found a balance between the kammerspiel of
Somewhere Below the Devil is Laughing and the ambient doom of
Les Lumieres Have Been Blown Out.
Shards of feedback constitute the main landscape of
We Are The Music Makers, evoking altered states of mind, and the vocals
soon come to match that mood with their slow, painful soliloquy that
undergoes ups and downs but fundamentally never lets up.
A completely different dynamics rules the stately stoner blues
Speak Of The Devil Speak Of The Sea:
the vocals are mixed low in the slow-motion rumble and it takes about 13 minutes
to hear a real scream. Unfortunately, this second piece fails to coalesce.
By then the emphasis of the sound had shifted from old-fashioned horror
to a more psychological thriller.
The two excruciating ceremonies of Die Tonight (Throne, 2007 -
Music Fear Satan, 2015)
continued to drill into the psyche of a black hole.
Winter Bride opens with the usual prolonged instrumental rumble
and then leaves the field open to the vocalist's verbose self-flagellation,
but too little happens to justify the long wait.
The solemn droning distortion of Swan Song, with the vocals hidden inside
the rumble instead of riding it and used in an almost percussive manner (one
scream per beat) achieve a more disturbing effect.
Dead Men Tell No Tales (Crucial Blast, 2007) is a double-disc compilation
of Speak Of The Sea and Die Tonight.
The two pieces of the mini-album Mer Morte (Throne, 2008) did not
add much to the canon.
Mer relies on a more subdued rumble and downplays the vocals.
Morte borders on somnolent, with languid wails in the background
instead of the usual shrieks, and its devotion to minimal music ends up
delivering a stronger atmosphere.
The 16-minute Rapture on the split album with the
Dawn Of The Catalyst (2007), is notably mainly for the vocalist's
new sabre-rattling tone within the usual cloud of guitar distortions.
The 29-minute piece of
the LP Sabbat Noir (Heathen Skulls, 2010),
featuring Grey Daturas' drummer Robert MacManus,
and the eleven-minute piece of the EP Sortilege (Heathen Skulls, 2011)
veered even closer to lugubrious ambient music.
The psychedelic element became prominent on
Omens (At A Loss, 2012), fueled by
angelic chanting and cosmic guitar noise, while the 19-minute
Black Becomes The Sun hinted at an even more creative synthesis
of doom-metal and acid-rock,
with the shrieks mostly replaced by sidereal echoes.
Ironically, the better produced
Sabbracadaver (Profound Lore, 2014)
ended up sounding more amateurish, with screams that wouldn't scare a child
in Louves, and a mournful melody emerging out of the martial plodding
of Pentagrammes that seems to mock vintage
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