Sub Templum

Written by: EW on 22/07/2008 22:17:15

In the world of the ultra-slow and ultra-heavy, Britain\'s Moss have built up somewhat of a reputation on the back of a number of demos and splits, and 2005\'s \"Cthonic Rites\" which consisted of just two songs in its 66 minute duration. With the release of \"Sub Templum\", Moss have clearly sold out by releasing a radio-friendly 4 songs totalling 73 minutes in length, a dramatic reduction in average-length-per-song in anyone\'s books.

When I say radio-friendly, I of course am referring to stations prepared to play virtually the slowest form of music one could create that is actually moving, i.e. not the virtually static world of Sunn0))). For in the 73 minutes of \"Sub Templum\" you could, quite legitimately, point out that almost nothing has happened - for every riff is so soul-crushingly slow and so drenched in feedback and bottom-end, for every tortured scream sounds like it was recorded by someone lowering a microphone down into Hell itself, and for every hit of a drum or cymbal there is a recognisable time seperation from the ones before and after. Whether this can be classed as music at all, and if it is possible to derive enjoyment from its drudgery will depend on the listener, a situation reflected in the final score. For those who, when the moment is right, can take the torture of listening to bands like Skepticism, Thergothon or Burning Witch, then this is right up their street. The sound and feel is so utterly bleak and lifeless it simply puts most Black Metal to shame, and for once proves the promotion surrounding an album to be correct: Moss have surely created the \"heaviest fucking Doom Metal Anti-Music of all time\", and may quite possibly \"ruin \'extreme\' doom metal for everyone\". Brave words indeed. Picking out select moments is difficult for \"Sub Templum\" requires nighttime listening with a mind fucked on drugs and a burning passion for the occult and horror, a situation I\'m sure we could all guess is not conducive to indepth analysis, of, well anything. The two long songs \"Subterraen\" and \"Gate III: Devils From The Outer Dark\" (23 and 35 minutes respectively) display the greatest despair and misery but don\'t go thinking the other two tracks are brief windows of hope and joy - listening to those is just as likely to make you want to kill yourself, however they simply provide a shorter timeframe in which to do it.

Any mark for an album like this is utterly and totally dependent on the listener. Most will despise it and just not \'get it\', but for what its worth, \"Sum Templum\" is brilliant. In those dark winter evenings where anything past the sonic equivalent of 3mph just won\'t do, this will. The intensity is unforgiving and forboding from start to finish with no let-up at all until its completion, but given its requirement of total darkness and it currently being the height of summer I am not going to be able to listen to this for a few months now. Damn. Mark dependent upon listener\'s interpretation: [9] or


Download: Subterraen
For The Fans Of: Burning Witch, Thergothon, Skepticism
Listen: Myspace

Release date 26.05.2008
Rise Above Records

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