Aphotic – Split w/ DUSK – To Find New Darkness/The Slumber split CD

up_070405_aphotic_duskFrom the ashes of Dusk and the sadly overlooked, but very good indeathstrial band Crawl, Aphotic have been the Midwestern band to watch in my opinion. The “Stillness Grows” full-length released last year on Flood the Earth (containing all 3 of the bands EPs) was an amazing combination of dark metal styles that took the airy atmospheres often found associated with bands like Opeth and Katatonia, and fused it with Aphotic’s own dense death/doom persona through layers of well written and often depressive darkness. Their latest EP, “To Find New Darkness” is the next stage of this bands growing and ever impressive development. All 4 tracks benefit from an extremely warm drone where minimal synth lines hauntingly mirror the guitar riffs to rise like smoke from the embers of a fading fire. The drum programming is so well done and produced with depth that the synthetic side of this bands sound never takes away from the warm rain pouring from their amps. “All We Have is This…” ends on a particularly impressive note where all of this bands elements flow into one long and effortlessly flowing track, pulsing along to the very roomy guitar tone and Chad’s offsetting and very effective vocal performance. He possesses a very meaty mid-ranged snarl that remains discernable enough to hear what’s being said, but he breaks it up with some well-considered pitch vocals as well to capitalize on the anguish in the guitar lines when quieter dynamics whisper a tale of woe. Dusk’s “The Slumber” was, until now, the unreleased and final musical output from this equally impressive death/doom band. Centering their efforts on more of the older death doom often found in Scandinavia, Dusk were heavy on the punishing power chord progressions, never really digging too deep into melody when the brutality of their sound was its most suffocating. The title track does start out with a nice passage of clean guitars and pitch singing to give Dusk a hint of diversity, but quickly erodes into the full on crush of the de-tuned guitars that were the very heart of this influential band. This split has been a very enjoyable addition to my Aphotic/Dusk collection. – Marty

~ by martyworm on January 2, 2009.

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