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Review: Reclusiam - Reclusiam (Demo)
Reclusiam (Demo)

Label: Independent
Year released: 2004
Duration: 44:50
Tracks: 4
Genre: Doom Metal


Review online: December 10, 2004
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Readers' Rating
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Rated 4.82/5 (96.36%) (11 Votes)

Reclusiam is a solo side-project of Ryan Henry from US Doom-masters Necare. Rather than the Paradise Lost-influenced Doomdeath of Necare, Reclusiam is all about what is called "Funeral Doom" – which is pretty much like regular Doom/Death only slooooooooooowwwwweerrrr. A cardinal rule of Funeral Doom must be 'never touch the strings more than once every ten seconds'. I mean it: the one word to describe this would be 'slow', fortunately the other word would be 'good'.

This is not a kind of music I seek out to obtain, but Necare are so good I was willing to give this a spin. Once again the difference is in the songwriting, as while this is slow it is never dull, and even the ungodly long songs on this demo do not get tedious. This is not rocking music, it is heavy, moody, melancholic, and slower than molasses in a walk-in freezer. But it is also highly atmospheric music that succeeds by getting you to partake of its gloomy mood. There are a lot of keys on this disc to provide the melody while the guitars mostly just crush out the sssllloooowwww background riffs. Vocals are sparse and harsh, but fit in very well. This should not work – it should be insufferable and dragging, but quality songwriting and excellent melodies make this compulsively listenable. Not really memorable – you can't sing along or anything, or even headbang – but I keep giving this more spins.

So this is an excellent demo in a small genre that certainly deserves more attention. The whole thing can be downloaded at the band's website, and it is more than worth the time and effort to do so. If My Dying Bride are too uptempo for you, then Reclusiam are definitely a band to check out. A strange but compelling album.

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