The most disturbing metal genre of all has to be none other than the tenebrous, atmospheric subgenre funeral doom metal, mixing elements of black and occasionally death with the stygian pitch of doom metal. With lyrics often rooted in lovecraftian lore, depression and suicide and abstract subjects this genre of complete caliginousness is surely among the darkest and most deranged genres.
A perfect example of a band deeply nestled in the black pits of funeral doom metal with slight eldritch influences from death metal would be Black Chalice. The absolutely esoteric sounds of the 4-song album "Years of Flame" has a sharp focus on darkly atmospheric moribund funeral doom metal with a thorough emphasis on tradition aswell as the incorporation of death-like elements. Like the howling of an ancient beast Black Chalice have created a convincing release of solid, although a bit unimaginative, death/funeral doom metal.
While Years of Flame is generally haunting and disturbingly deranged with tracks like Chronophage and Infallibility of Semen there seems to be an overall problem with the mixing as the drums are often very hard to hear and the guitar's sound is quite boomy at times. Fortunately for Black Chalice, who have made other prior releases aswell, the lacking quality of the mixing does not overshadow the escatonic simplicity of this fine release.
With a total length of almost 31 minutes Years of Flame by Black Chalice is by no means a lengthy album. The four wholesome tracks (all of more than 6 minutes in length), however, make for a fairly interesting journey through the disturbing soundscapes of Black Chalice. 6/10 guitars.
1. Empirical Solitude
3. Infallibility of Semen
4. Years of Flame
Black Chalice - Years of Flame is available for free download HERE
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