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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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Mist Of Misery - Fields Of Isolation [EP] (2017) - Review

Band: Mist Of Misery
Album title: Fields Of Isolation [EP]
Release date: 15 December 2017
Label: Black Lion Records, Talheim Records

01. Fields Of Isolation (feat. Paolo Bruno)
02. Across Empty Pastures
03. Hymm To Silence
04. A Drift In Cosmic Vacuum
05. Tortured By Solitude [Coldworld cover]
06. Shackles Of Life - Part 2
07. Crystal Vapour Eclipse
08. Bottomless Grievous Caverns

Fields Of Isolation is the second and final chapter of two EPs released in 2017 by this Swedish absolute masters of blackened symphonic/ambient metal. The first EP, Shackles Of Life, is still so very hot as it was released in August and it offered some pretty versatile symphonic black metal music, I can easily say that Mist Of Misery are firm in their own sonic world. With Fields Of Isolation the band follows the same musical path, it's just another part of something that could be easily a full-length album, so that I don't repeat myself too much, please read my review of Shackles Of Life over HERE and you'll know what you can get from Fields Of Isolation.

But still, new EP brings eight new songs with playing time of more than half an hour. Fields Of Isolation is a bit more ambiental, there are more elements taken from classical music, especially piano, which is perfectly inserted to give additional mystical gloom and melancholic touch, has one of main roles here. If it wouldn't be for shrieking vocals and some typical black metal tremolo picks, the music done by Mist Of Misery wouldn't be classified as black metal at all. This band is above all that, they make dark and sorrowful extreme symphonic metal like you can rarely hear. There are plenty of highly atmospheric synths, female and male chants, classical strings, orchestrations and of course symphonic elements creating kind of multidimensional haunting ambiance.

Fields Of Isolation has three proper tracks, one of them is a very well done cover of Coldworld's "Tortured by Solitude", the other two are just perfect examples of songwriting mastery that this band achived. Mist Of Misery also showed that they can easily add some vibrant rocking groove and well played solos, without loosing that melancholic touch. The rest of this EP are mostly piano/synth driven instrumental interludes, nice to listen but still I think that they exagerated a bit,... yes we already got the idea that you know how to play piano.

The opening EP titled track is one of the best things this band ever did. Strong, highly atmospheric, black, depressive and cold as it should be. Great vocal job, perfect blend between bands main vocalist Mortuz-Denatus and Paolo Bruno from Thy Light who appears as a guest vocalist. The soundscapes when the band goes in full rage are always multilayered and it needs more that just one listen to get a full picture of what it offers. "Hymn To Silence" is a well structured wistful composition blending together ambiental and neo-classical parts with symphonic black metal. Throughout the EP everything is very coherent, dynamic, nicely flowing, with necessary pathos and drive.

Just like it was Shackles Of Life, also Fields Of Isolation is one hell of a magnificient sonic experience, it brings forth a refined dark musical art with endless melodic guitar harmonies, many different moods, tempo changes, otherworldly gothy piano touches and stirring melancholic vocals which range from suicidal shrieks to typical black metal ones and spoken words. And yes, I can't forget to mention the magnificient cover artwork done by Russian author Alex Tartsus, who already did artwork for bands previous two releases. The band has since their beginnings, their first output was Bleak Autumn EP released in 2010, improved very much and I can easily say that they are on a steady path to become one of the greatest and most unique extreme/symphonic/dark/black metal acts. Waiting for their sophomore full-length now, which should be released in 2018.

Review written by: T.V.
Rating: 8,5/10

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Band: Phonothek
Album title: Lost In Fog
Release date: 17 May 2016
Label: Cryo Chamber

The Phonothek debut appears to be one more step in the expansion of the Cryo Chamber image. On Lost In Fog, we hear a lot more overtly musical elements than are often present. The dichotomy gives the entirety of Lost In Fog a brilliantly dramatic and cinematic edge. The cinematic aspect is further displayed in the choice of track titles. It seems as though we are being guided through a story, and each title gives a bit of a hint into the narrative. As with many dark ambient releases, there are enough hints here to suggest a theme and a progression of scenes. Yet luckily these hints are not commanding enough to steal the sense of mystery and discovery from the listener. Phonothek prove that there is still quite a lot more to offer in this area, much of which we may not even realize is possible until someone comes along and pushes the boundaries just a bit further.

Read a full review HERE