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Darker Than You Think - 80%

Nature, November 12th, 2006

Roman Saenko follows up last years debut release "Twilight Of Europe" with this fine piece of dark-ambience again looking towards that period of the 14th century. However, whilst that album focused on several different aspects to that dark period of history (ie; the black plague, alchemy, witch hunting etc) "A Chronicle Of The Plague" narrows its vision, instead choosing to focus on (and around) the year 1349 when the black death of Europe invaded and took the lives of many millions of people.

Musically "A Chronicle...." follows in a similiar direction to "Twilight..." with minimalist, repetitive, short pieces of dark ambience. However the songs are more melodic and varied this time but are even darker than before. Infact this writer found it far more haunting, sinister and fear inducing than its predecessor. Another improvement on the debut is that whilst "Twilght..." might have felt like a series of intros and outros this record feels more like a whole album.

There is even a guitar that makes a very brief appearance in the opening song that gives hints of funeral doom (apparently the original idea behind Dark Ages). It should also be noted that the final track on the album "Dreams In Yellow" brings to mind some of Hate Forest's most ambient moments and it could easily have fiited into the material on Hate Forest's all ambient "Temple Forest" demo.

For those out there who already own and like "Twilight Of Europe" or "Temple Forest" then this should hopefully be another satisfactory purchase. All those who enjoy dark ambient music and appreciate it might also do well to check out this release. Far from being anything exceptional but certainly not a waste of time.