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Sounds of the void... - 97%

ShadowSouled, April 18th, 2008

To be perfectly honest, I don't much like Paul Ledney's brand of black metal as performed in previous releases (this is the part where I get swarmed by the "black metal hordes" and get nailed to a pair of two by fours for blasphemy most high), but I decided to check this release out on a whim. I assumed it would be worth at least a listen, seeing as it's the first thing he's released in 7 years.

Let me tell you something about this release: it's one of the coldest, blackest, most truly EVIL things I have heard in a while. It's an almost complete departure from their previous stuff, which is a blessing to me. The only band who is in any way similar to this stuff is Abruptum, and even that's a far cry. This, unlike Abruptum, has some structure. As far as I can tell, the guitars only appear from time to time, such as in the beginning of the first song... or maybe the buzzing noise throughout the tracks is also guitar... It's actually rather hard to tell whether it's just an effect or not. Paul Ledney's vocals on this release actually sound like he's retching up something foul, which adds to the atmosphere of the release. I don't believe there are lyrics whatsoever, more like words scattered and repeated throughout the tracks. The drums, which are usually used to tie the instruments together, take second place to the effects and are quite sparse, which conveys to the listener that he/she is taking part in a ritual inside a deep cave. The strange effects used throughout are what tie the EP together, at least in my opinion.

There are some bands that capture a certain essence very well; Arkhon Infaustus, filth & foul muck; Funeral Mist, concentrated evil; and Ofermod, death. With this release, Havohej captures emptiness. I was going to insert a metaphor to better describe it, but words are truly useless in this case; listen to it, and make up your own mind. Although I warn you, if you don't like black/noise very much, you should probably stay away from this.