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Chilling and mesmerising - 90%

diseasedmind, September 7th, 2007

I'm amazed that no-one has felt moved enough to submit a review of this remarkable split, so i guess it'll have to be me.

The Joyless side of the EP consists of 3 short tracks, the production on each being a reasonable if a little light. These are all very melodic quasi-pop tunes with just enough malice stirred in to mildly disturb the listener. Very good tunes but unfortunately the first couple of tracks appear to have been pressed only in the right channel (seems unlikely this would be deliberate). Still, interesting stuff from a band with a great evil twist on 'indie rock'. 80%

Flip the EP over and you have Uppgivet Hjarta (whatever that is), a much longer Woods of Infinity track clocking in at perhaps 6 minutes or so. Here folks we have what must surely be one of the most disturbing tracks ever committed to vinyl. The remarkable thing about this track is that it's a thing of mesmerizing yet appalling beauty. The spoken lyrics work extremely well in conveying a dispassionate and uncaring air (wish I knew what they meant - though the general gist becomes apparent soon enough). The song itself is again a long way from black metal of any sort, though it's the black metal malice that shines through once again. There's a great groove running through the track courtesy of some interesting bass harmonies which sound at times like they'd be more at home in a dub track than anything to sprout from the BM scene. The use of samples is simply fabulous too, and this is what really marks this track out as something truly remarkable. The first time I heard the mid section of the song I swear I must have blanched. I've heard a lot of disturbing experimental music over the years (Coil being one of the obvious masters) and what WoI have crafted here stands up against anything I've ever heard in terms of compelling atmosphere, sheer lurking horror and - yes - groove. Utterly essential for anyone interested in the more adventurous end of BM (and anyone interested in dark music full stop). Simply stunning. 100%.