without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
I have always liked the more "weird" side of Beherit. I find most of the demo work to be quite pedestrian Blasphemy worship and it never really interested me quite like the album Drawing Down The Moon did, and I feel that bizarre atmosphere that Drawing Down the Moon had is most present here on Electric Doom Synthesis. An apt description of this album might be that if you took all the metal elements away from Drawing Down The Moon and made an album out of the weirdness and atmosphere that results.
I have since grown to love Electric Doom Synthesis more than any other Beherit album. The feel is mechanical, much like its predecessor, and might seem cheesy upon first listen, but the atmosphere was best summed up by Holocausto himself: ritual ambient music. This is an apt description. Floating in the hallucinatory space between darkspace and proper ambient drone, Electric Doom Synthesis finds us touring many exquisite atmospheres, as tangible (if not more) than the notes and melodies played. A few songs bleed into each other, and compositions range from the rather sparse (Sense) to the inevitably dense (Deep Night 23rd) and the album closes with a haunting minimalist closer, that somehow brings us out of the trance induced by Sense.
While many seem to dislike the strange sounds and random arrangement at the end of Sense, I found the effect to be similar to the rest of the album; if there were ever a candidate for "music for out of body experiences", it would be this, and Sense represents the peak of dissociation. It also helps if Electric Doom Synthesis is listened to as a whole, since these elements are best fleshed out as one listening experience. The atmosphere is slightly jarring at first (especially We Worship) but this all plays into the atmospheric narrative present, going from jittered beta waves down to the nadir of delta somnulence. It all forms a stew of atmospheric delight that is perfect for relaxation, astral projection, and even simply driving around deserted areas during the barren hours of the late evening/early morning. Words are present during a few songs, but for the most part are irrelevant. Listening to this, vocals are no issue, since the volume and mix is never saturated or oppressive, but while listening I found words were not necessary, period, even with a group of 4 people. Such is the impact this music has on the listener.
Can I recommend Electric Doom Synthesis for everyone? No. Most people will simply not take the time to properly interpret the material, or it will simply pass over their heads. For me, however, Electric Doom Synthesis finds itself in a perfect niche in my music collection, and in the right mindset, is extraordinary and hauntingly dissociating.
In the history of music, we've come to know many bands well after their days of activity on the scene. A lot of us feel the same way, "how I wish I heard these guys when they were still around." Sometimes many of those bands take a few years to be truly appreciated by people. I found out of this band around five years ago. They had ceased to exist before my recognition of them. It all started with 'The Oath Of Black Blood'. I was hooked for some reason. It wasn't something that many people liked but it grabbed me.
After the fix I wanted more, as you listen to their back catalogue you hear a clear and definite progression in sound and ideas. 'Drawing Down The Moon' still had some rawness to it but it was cleaner, better written and more cohesive. Then came the 'Messe Des Morts' EP and then you start to hear glimpses of what comes on 'Electric Doom Synthesis', electronically aided vocals and drums. Then came H418ov21.C and it was a complete departure and in my mind a failure. Their most forgettable release by miles.
So comes 'Electric Doom Synthesis', an album that combines 'Drawing Down The Moon and H418ov21.C at once. But this time he puts in a better effort on his part and it makes for a remarkable listen. If you're looking for early stage raw black metal, this is definitely not for you. It's dark, industrialized, electronic based ambient music to be really precise. The title perfectly describes the music contained within. It's not necessarily frightening dark ambient as some other dark ambient releases by other bands. But an eerie, uneasy atmosphere is achieved here. At this point Nuclear Holocausto Vengeance is a couple of years into the solo act behind Beherit. It's clear that he was leaning towards different tastes and it really showed here. This time he truly dedicates himself to this style of music and it pays dividends.
So how does the music stand up 11 years later? Really well considering that electronic based music gets old quick due to rapid changes in technology. Just listen to any electronic music from the late 80's to early 90's. The lone track that has guitar in it is 'Drawing Down The Moon' and its a real catchy one at that too, it also has a drumbeat to guide it along wonderfully. The seventh track 'Sense' is perhaps the most interesting track and the closest to sounding like something from his latter project 'Suuri Shamaani'. When you look at the timeline of this legendary band you see so many different styles and tastes that you can't help but praise them for having the balls to make such drastic changes to their sound and ideas.
I can't help but think to myself that the current highly praised Swiss black metal band 'Darkspace' would not be around today if it weren't for this band. Especially when you hear the obvious influences, their sound derives mainly from this album and Drawing Down The Moon. Beherit leaves us this last piece of work and an excellent piece it is. They begun their careers ripping off Blasphemy with 'The Oath Of Black Blood' that it would've fit nicely between 'Fallen Angel Of Doom' and 'Gods Of War'. Then they made giant and original strides with their rest of their releases. The band has been no more for 10 years and Finland still hasn't seen anything as good as Beherit, probably never will. Lastly, Electric Doom Synthesis deserves a reissue.
Beherit, Finlands gift to the blackmetal world. Or atleast it was. After doing blackmetal for some time Beherit decided to chance style and started playing ambient music. "Electric Doom Synthesis" is their second ambient album.
In the beginning of "Ambush" there's a low demonic voice saying "Say you love him! Say you love Satan!" behind an electronic soundscape. The feel of this song is very dark and it made me very anxious. This song pretty much takes away all hope of this album being blackmetal, but still it makes sure that the atmosphere is very black.
Most of this album is based on electronics and different kinds of weird noises. There's also a lot of distorted guitars in most of the songs, which of course makes is easier for a metal fan to get into this album. The percussion is also in a very central part in the music. At times we also get to hear some vocals which are usually distorted or put through some other kind of effect.
The highlights for me on this album were the songs "Ambush" and "Drawing Down the Moon". The latter has without a doubt the best guitar riff (If not the only real riff) on the album and it is repeated for almost the whole song.
On the negative side there's the song "Sense" which get's rather boring after the first three minutes and as the song is over ten minutes long it really has a major effect on the whole album. But fortunately the closer "Temple" makes things a little more interesting again, but only a little.
Even though I could pick up some tracks as better than other, this album is one of those records you have to take as a whole and not as a collection of good songs. And as a whole this is a great release. But if you feel like you can't listen to anything else than metal, stay back. This is only for the open-minded metalheads and to everybody else who can appreciate good ambient, with a very dark atmosphere.