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Review: Blood of the Black Owl - A Feral Spirit
Blood of the Black Owl
A Feral Spirit

Label: Bindrune Recordings
Year released: 2008
Duration: 63:38
Tracks: 8
Genre: Doom Metal

Rating: 2.75/5

Review online: April 23, 2009
Reviewed by: Lars Christiansen
Readers Rating
A Feral Spirit

Rated 2.7/5 (54%) (10 Votes)

I'd heard good things about Blood of the Black Owl, but when it actually came to checking them out, the music didn't have the impact I was expecting. To be fair, there is a lot of its touted blackened doom cloaked with a overhanging theme of nature mysticism, but for me, there's just too little going on for large parts of the album to stop my interest from waning.

Annoyingly, the album begins with the biggest bugbear for me. A near 10 minute entirely shamanistic ‘ambient' track which - rather than being an entrancing hypnotic affair - is possibly the most dull intro track ever created. Perhaps I'm missing something? Perhaps I'm not in touch with my inner self? Or perhaps I just see through pretentious arty-farty shit from a mile away. Anyway, when the band do get around to playing some actual music; it's actually got a great atmospheric vibe to be fair – it's just there's not enough of it to sate my hunger for extreme doom. At its best, A Feral Spirit exudes a fantastic ritualistic aura, creating a spiritual quality throughout large parts of the album's rhythmic trudging, helped along with utilization of woodwind instruments, organs and rattles. At its worst, it's really, REALLY boring. Seriously, if I wanted to hear someone shaking rattles throughout an entire track with little else, I'd become a fan of Neurosis, or head to the world music section of my record store.

As an album, I just can't help but feel that at least twenty minutes of its near 64 minute run-time could've been sliced straight out to make it twice as mesmerizing and enjoyable as it is now. But as it is, it's only just over an average album in my eyes due to the amount of time spent wanting to be put out of my misery throughout the frequent dull ‘ambient' parts.

Other related information on the site
Review: A Banishing Ritual (reviewed by Adam McAuley)
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