Published on Friday, 17 June 2016 20:26
Band: Lithos Sarcophagos
Album title: III [EP]
Release date: 6 June 2016
01. Stay Away
02. The City Of Hate
03. The Last Witch
04. The Astronomical Clock
The Swedish one man band Lithos Sarcophagos is back with a new EP simply named III. Like the title suggests this is already the third EP in a row for this band, a brainchild of ex-Soulgrinder and Madness Of The Night member Daniel Dante. After the debut EP Myself, released in 2014 and the previous one, DeadEnd, released in 2015 (you can read my review over HERE), Daniel just continues where he left off. Yes, it's true that I was blown away by this uncompromising, powerful and atmospheric gothic rock, and as well these four new tracks are very tasty, there's a bit more of emphasis on bleak and cinematic atmosphere, but I miss a certain dismantling flow and that monolithic metalic guitar drive like it was present on "End Of Time" for example. Nevertheless, if Lithos Sarcophagos did one small step backwards, there is also a step forward, best noticed in the sole song structures which became a bit more cohesive, even epic and like I said before also cinematic.
The new offering of Lithos Sarcophagos is filled with captivating bleak melodies and hypnotizing typical gothic rock elements that have a lot in common with second wave of goth rock from early to mid 90s, but as well fans of The Sisters and Nephs should get their daily dose of sonic satisfaction. "Stay Away" is a typical powerful gothic rocker like we are used from this act, good example of the style but nothing that special either to be honest. It's the second one, "The City Of Hate", an epic track which enthuses with mesmerizing mixture of horror rock, doomy rhythms and straight organic goth guitars, that really shows what's new on the plate. Everything is very murky, yet adventurous and multidimensional thanks to well used synths, several samples, like are the sounds of crows, gentle piano touches and some symphonic elements. I was impressed about how the last three songs build up on atmosphere, especially the obscure "The Last Witch" and also the last one, really haunting and psychotic "The Astronomical Clock", where Daniel nicely inserts some classical strings, nostalgic piano and acoustic elements, that blend so well together with groovy thumping doom goth. In those 22 minutes of playing time the listener is about to experience one of the darkest and most impactful gothic rock music ever that will in my opinion force any true fan of the genre to crave for more.
Daniel's vocals are truly dark, cold, deep, dynamic, sometimes with a kind of sharp punkish energetic glare and often evocative, he adds that special glitter to every song with it. While everything seems on the right place I wasn't really impressed with production, it's a bit more unpolished, tuned down, rough and maybe even incloplete if compared to the one on the previous EP, so it might be a bit distractful for some listeners. Otherwise this is a fantastic release, best heard in the correlation with both previous releases of Lithos Sarcophagos. On III Lithos Sarcophagos offers a very adventurous, yet complex but accumulative and dense soundscape that is like always also lyrically very strong. I think that this band is a must for everyone who fancies gothic rock genre in general, but also to every one who likes anything related to horror and dark cinematic sound. I think that now it's a time for a full-lenght, isn't it Daniel?
Review written by: T.V.