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Terra Relicta Top 20 Of 2017



01. Lacrimosa
- Testimonium
02. Sólstafir
- Berdreyminn
03. Soror Dolorosa
- Apollo
04. Ulver
- The Assassination Of Julius Caesar
05. Myrkur
- Mareridt
06. Sun Of The Sleepless
- To The Elements
07. Moonspell
- 1755
08. Au Champ Des Morts
- Dans La Joie
09. Andras
- Reminiszenzen...
10. Svartsinn
- Mørkets Variabler

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Dystopia - Chaos Philosophorum (2017) - Review

Band: Dystopia
Album title: Chaos Philosophorum
Release date: 21 April 2017
Label: Zwaertgevegt Records

Tracklist:
01. Intro
02. Through The Vortex
03. Black Death
04. Archon
05. Interlude
06. Bound To Annihilate

The insidious mortal disease that spread the terror across Europe in the 14th century, more precisely between 1346-53, ripped approximately 30–60% of Europe's total population. The plague has reduced the world population from an estimated 450 million down to 350–375 million. The name comes from the Latin word “Atra”, that means both “terrible” and “black”. Dutch black metallers Dystopia, rekindles our memory for one of humanity's saddest catastrophes. The plague, black death, is the main theme of Chaos Philosophorum, their latest full-length album, that hit the stores in late April by Zwaertgevegt Records.

The impressive artwork was designed by Adam Burke from Nightjar Illustration, represents a fine expression of art, the frightening figure of the "Plague's Doctors". The band with album thematics is also suggesting that the plague can have a comparison with what happens in our world nowadays. The music was writte by Dennis Onsia and the expressive lyrics by Cees de Wit. Dystopia comes from the city Den Helder and started out as a three-piece band in 2004, formed by Dennis Onsia (vocals and guitar), Bob van Deutekom (bass, back vocals) and Cees de Wit on drums. Dennis had been playing with Anubis and Chaos Asylum in past years and still is active together with Cees de Wit in Pulverised. In 2006 the band released the first demo demo The Last Assault, also incorporating a second guitarist, Rick Jongman, who has played also on This Means War, their first EP released in 2007. A full-length album, Decay, has been released in 2012. After two EPs, Haat and A Tribute To The Nightside Eclipse, released respectively in 2013 and 2015, is the time of the sophomore album - Chaos Philosophorum. Nowadays Dystopia has in the line-up also Thomas Cochrane on guitars/trumpet/trombone and backing vocals.

During this dark journey named Chaos Philosophorum, the band presents us along the tracks a combination of black metal, doom, death metal, psychedelic post-metal, atmospheric black metal and progressive metal elements, among others. Sounds like Rotting Christ and Satyricon in many points. I'm sure that fans of those bands will be very pleased with this album and so was I. The opening theme leads you to a sense of a near threat. The band doesn’t just conform themselves with the brilliant instrumental and risks in a ritualistic summon through a frightening vocal. During this initial 10 minutes long travel in a deep immersive experience with changing tempos and vocal styles, they took my hand through a very dense and dark pathway and the sludgy low end with a fast performance of rhythms, delivering throughout an interesting vibe. “Through The Vortex” presents a spectrum of influences and a standard black metal attack. Aside the trend mark that represents the other tracks, it's rough and hard and sometimes shows the raw side of its face.
 
“Black Death” delivers kind of a devilish sadness, a mixture of black/doom with evocative guitar riffs and,... what a voice, wow!! But at 2:36 follows an amazing explosion that threw me against the wall! One of my favorite tracks. “Archon” pleases me with its apocalyptic groove and the old school death metal vibe. "Interlude" didn't catch too much my attention, but the last track is a beautiful demonic act. Strong, harsh with a lot of passionate aggression, and with an enchanting solo guitar at 3:00! No words, and before I can breathe again begins a fast galloping rhythm. Congrats for this very refined chapter of music. Looking forward to new releases of Dystopia.

Review written by: Felin Frost
Rating: 8/10

Recommended by Terra Relicta

Band: Hidden By Ivy
Album title: Acedia
Release date: 4 September 2015
Label: Alchera Visions

The musical output of Hidden By Ivy is hard to put in brackets, but what those two artists do is certainly giving some shivers down the spine with their incredible sense to compose refined and highly emotive music. There are found many different elements, from post-rock basis, to incredible subtle layers of dark wave, art pop, gothic elements, shoegaze, even cold wave, ambient, some jazz, a bit of folk and yet much more, everything put together into such an exquisite melancholic flow of refreshing meditative sounds. Acedia is a blistering attack for your senses. It has so much emotion, meditative soundscapes, melancholic catchy melodies and heartrending vocal arrangements that is hard not to be overwhelmed by it. Those constant variations in sound and intriguing art pop/rock compositional elements used all over are certainly making this album one of a kind. There's that vintage influence present, but the album sounds still very modern and fresh, also because of a genious production and final mix. Every single song, like as well the album as a whole has that hard to obtain pathos which captivates the listener from the start till the end and makes the one wanting to return for more.

Read a full review HERE