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Review: Officium Triste - Charcoal Hearts (15 Years of Hurt)
Officium Triste
Charcoal Hearts (15 Years of Hurt)

Label: Displeased Records
Year released: 2009
Duration: 51:15
Tracks: 9
Genre: Doom/Death

Rating: 4.25/5

Review online: September 30, 2009
Reviewed by: Lars Christiansen
Readers Rating
Charcoal Hearts (15 Years of Hurt)

Rated 3.8/5 (76%) (5 Votes)

This isn't a new full-length release from the Dutch Death/Doom folk that are Officium Triste, but rather a compilation of their 1996 EP Mountains of Depressiveness, their half of their 1998 split with Cold Mourning, and one newly recorded track "No Hope". The compilation has been put together to celebrate the bands 15th Anniversary, and to be fair, it is pretty damn good.

Quite often, you find that when a band has been releasing material for as long as 15 years, the earlier material is generally seen as the best of the band's works. Not so with Officium Triste – as the newly recorded track fits in perfectly with the compiled older material. The old school sound of the band is rife on both "No Hope", and the re-recorded "Divinity", but it's the next two tracks that mix up the sound of the compilation. The acoustic version of "My Charcoal Heart" quickly followed by a Killing Joke cover shows a lighter, much more upbeat side to the band who're generally more renowned for their melody-laden listless melancholy. From "Fading Like A Dying Candle" onwards, the growling Doom/Death re-appears and lasts out the remainder of the compilation (with the final three tracks from the aforementioned Mountains of Depressiveness being my personal favorites).

This will certainly be on a lot of long term Officium Triste fans' wishlists, as the early material has been extremely difficult to come across for a while. However, for those into the darker, more morbid side of the doom world who have yet to stumble across these guys before, this is more than worth your while.

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