V.I.T.R.I.O.L. - Purging The Tunnels
Review by Brian on November 18, 2014.
Coming off two amazing releases, 2011's The Tunnels and 2013's The Purging, Terra Tenebrosa released the V.I.T.R.I.O.L. - Purging the Tunnels EP earlier this year. The EP consists of left over recordings from those sessions. Staying pretty consistent with those releases, V.I.T.R.I.O.L. maintains the nightmarish eclectic sound that the band is known for.
The 2 song EP begins with "Draining the Well". Clocking in at nearly 18 minutes it feels like 3 songs in 1. It begins in the traditional Terra Tenebrosa style, black metal-ish guitar work drenched in reverb and delay reminiscent of Blut Aus Nord's masterpiece The Work Which Transforms God. However, Terra Tenebrosa is darker, creepier and more disorienting if you can believe that. At around the 6 minute mark of the track it transitions into a terrifying, atmospheric blend of sounds that is sure to induce nightmares. At 11 minutes in it breaks into a sludgy, slow moving riff that buries you beneath the weight of the heavy crushing bass. Of course throughout all of this are the layered vocal stylings of The Cuckoo. This was the last song they recorded at their old studio, so this may be the transformation of the band as they step into a new studio and a different direction.
The other track "Apokatastasis" actually adds a little post rock vibe to the mix. It has an uptempo and rather catchy drum beat that it retains through out the first 5 minutes of the 7 minute track. That beat is accompanied by single note picking guitars. The last 2 minutes of the song reintroduce that heavy sludgy bass feel from the previous track. I can see why this was left over as it wouldn't have fit on either of the first two albums.
Terra Tenebrosa is a special band. They are truly original and defy categorization. There are black metal elements, hints of post rock, progressive touches and sludgy riffs on V.I.T.R.I.O.L.. - Purging the Tunnels. The title of this release is appropriate as well. The Cuckoo stated that these tracks that were left over mark the end of this phase in the bands career, this release is a way of wiping the slate clean and moving forward. Open up your mind and take what this band has to offer. In an era where cloning by new bands and regurgitating material from established bands is all too common in metal, Terra Tenebrosa are a breath of fresh air.
Rating: 9 out of 10