Following on from their acclaimed second album, Stardust, released in March of this year on Black Lion Records, Belgium Post Black Metal band Soul Dissolution return with this brilliant EP, Nowhere.
It’s clear to hear some of their influences on this amazingly atmospheric EP. A genuinely mesmerising Agalloch and Alcest vibe hints across the two lengthy tracks found here, and it is indeed a memorable experience, to say the least.
One thing that immediately stood out was the fantastic production. Oliver Carell, producer of work by Heretoir and Ophis lends his talents on this EP, giving a crystal clear quality, adding depth, ambience, and atmosphere. The result is truly epic in stature.
Lyrical content dealing with pain and trying to move forward through the sorrow as well as loneliness creates the backdrop for the stories told across this EP, and it is written and sung in a breath-taking way.
Road to Nowhere starts off delicately. Haunting translucent guitars set the tone, beautifully melodically, and sorrowful. Crashing cymbals and technically proficient drumming comes from nowhere, startling and effectively creating an urgency that brilliantly adds power to the track before things turn very black and harrowing.
The distortion of the guitars sounds fantastic. A truly death filled sonic mess, of the best kind, adds so much dirt and tragedy to the track. Mortifying vocals rip through the mix, adding so much emotion and weight, enough to make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. The amount of pain and sorrow expressed by lead vocalist Acharan is genuinely outstanding and suits the grime-filled distorted guitars well.
Jabawock tears up the neck of his guitar, into the dusty end, changing the feel of the music to a much more epic nature. He isn’t particularly fast, but he plays with soul, and along with the vocal work the feeling of all hope having been lost is portrayed with extreme style and finesse.
The track sounds even more devastating when Acharan switches to a more monotonal style of singing. It sounds gut-wrenchingly heart-breaking. A deep chasm of dark agonising depression. The emotional range across this EP is staggering. It genuinely surprised me. Never knowing which direction the EP was going to take next. It turns out;
the answer is anger.
Brutalising vicious vocals tear through the pained mix, cutting through the instruments like a knife through warm butter. The only negative aspect being the bass is tough to make out at times. But the drum work from drummer Celestial is fantastic and pummelling, adding ferocity and calmness precisely when needed. The drumming sounds exceptionally technical at times. A pure talent behind the kit.
At times the second and final track reminded me instrumentally of the band Mono. The beautiful melodic guitar with some light cymbal usage before the drums truly start up, offering a slow thundering beat. More distorted and pained vocals fill the full soundstage, and it brings so much dramatic depth to the track. The vocalist sounds utterly broken inside and brings to mind own personal experiences. The way the melody remains hidden amongst the distortion is awe-inspiring, and such an extreme amount of desperation and longing to the music.
Pick slides and very subtle harmonics add to the track, making things unpredictable and different. The increasing amount of ambience and atmosphere towards the latter part of the track is a true testament to the producer’s ability and makes things so ghostly at certain moments of this EP.
When the drums start to increase speed, everything starts to sound even more epic and monumental, and with the aid of the continuing Guitar solo, it suddenly starts to sound almost affirming. Truly fantastic.
I was so impressed with this EP, and considering its only two tracks and equals almost 25 minutes at length it never gets dull. I strongly recommend you check this band out.
They are true testaments to their craft and know how to pull off some genuinely epic material.
“Nowhere” will be released by GS Productions on the 18th October 2018, in a highly limited edition of 150 hand-numbered digipaks.
Written by Darrell Smith