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Review: Lyrinx/Elysian Blaze/D.O.R. - Universal Absence
Elysian Blaze
Universal Absence

Label: Insidious Poisoning Records
Year released: 2008
Duration: 76:43
Tracks: 8
Genre: Black Metal

Rating: 3.75/5

Review online: February 8, 2009
Reviewed by: Michel Renaud
Readers Rating
Universal Absence

Rated 3/5 (60%) (1 Vote)

This one was a tough one to do.  Not that I haven't been exposed to the genres on display here, but nearly 77 minutes of this is a lot to take.  We have three bands here with somewhat similar styles, but each has a pretty different approach.  Lyrinx is the closest to your "average" raw and doomy Black Metal band, Elysian Blaze is a more like a blackened form of Funeral Doom with some ambient leanings, and D.O.R. is a very slow-paced, minimalistic raw Black Metal band.  If I have to pick a favourite here, it's Lyrinx - partly because I prefer their style, but it's the only one with songs that actually vary significantly, marrying a doomy atmosphere with the early to mid-90s Scandinavian Black Metal vibe - not the speedy stuff, mind you, but rather the raw, borderline atmospheric style - a more accessible Burzum, if I have to throw a name out there.  Elysian Blaze only present one track here, but it's over 12 minutes long.  Very little variation, it's like the soundtrack to a mindfuck.  Mix Funeral Doom and Suicidal Black Metal and this is what it sounds like.  D.O.R. is a distortion fest, but in slow motion.  It's by far the most "lo-fi" of the three bands here, and the agonizing vocals sounding like they're from outer-tomb are downright chilling at times.

There's nothing basically wrong with the songs here, with each bands being masters of their craft (or at least pretty freakin' good ;)), but putting all of this stuff together on one disc is overdoing it.  Every time I listen to this, I'm not half way through that I'm already eager for it to be over.  The album is long, but also feels very long, and in my eyes that's not a desirable "quality".  It is, however, excellent at what I think the bands set it out to be:  An unbearably crushing, heavy, depressing slab of blackened metal that'll make you want to kill yourself.  Tediously effective (I'm still here though.)

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