Bohren & Der Club Of Gore
Sunset Mission


4.5
superb

Review

by username345 USER (52 Reviews)
January 8th, 2009 | 91 replies


Release Date: 2000 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Dark gloomy and very atmospheric noir jazz/ambient, played at doom metal pace. The perfect album to play in solitude while walking through a city late at night.

The grimly titled ‘Bohren & der Club of Gore’ was formed in 1992 by members of hardcore bands with names like ‘Chronical Diarrhoea’ and ‘Macabre Farmhouse’. With this background, you may expect Bohren to follow in a similar pattern of playing incredibly fast and vicious punk or metal.

What the band actually do though is move all the way to the other extreme, playing a slowed down and incredibly sparse mixture of jazz and ambient. There is still a metal influence, but it’s the dark, gloomy and ponderous sound of doom metal, especially Black Sabbath, that Bohren draw from. With their third album, 2000’s Sunset Mission, Bohren move toward perfecting their noir jazz soundscapes, replacing the guitar of the first two albums with a tenor saxophone.

This fusion of jazz and ambient played at a snail-pace works incredibly well, perfectly creating an impressively dark and haunting mood. The music is always tense and edgy despite being so mellow because of it‘s unpredictable melodies, which is what makes it so enjoyable to listen to. Sunset Mission is the perfect album to play in solitude while walking through a city late at night because of the perfect noir atmosphere. It is not music you can listen to at any time, but when in the right mood it works perfectly. The songs, all instrumental, flow into each other perfectly so it is easy to get drawn in to the atmosphere.

The songs, ranging from 5 to nearly 17 minutes in length are centred on seemingly never ending double-bass lines. While this may sound dull, it is actually one of the reason’s the music works so well. The bass-lines are all gripping and totally hypnotic with just enough subtle changes to stop them from becoming stale but not quite enough to break the trance-like feel that is so easy to get totally lost in. The slow pace puts emphasis on every single bass note, making each one sound just as powerful as the last. The drumming is equally as restrained, though while the often simple and sparse drumming is usually played very gently with brushes it is equally as gripping as the bass, creating much of the music’s tension. With the exception of some rising cymbals that add even more to this tension, the drumming is never that loud, staying in the background for most of the music.

The real highlight of Sunset Mission though, is Christoph Clöser’s fantastic saxophone playing, which sadly loses some of it’s importance in Bohren’s later albums. The rich emotional sax fades in at just the right moments before the music starts getting at all boring, playing unpredictable slow-motion melodies that sound totally improvised and always interesting. The piano plays equally unpredictably throughout, sometimes weaving between the slow saxophone at a much faster pace than everything else to add some excitement to the music and sometimes remaining as laid-back as the rest of the music, with each note left echoing for what seems like an eternity before the next.

The problem with Sunset Mission is that it only works if you’re in the right mood to listen to it. The extended song lengths and long running time of 1 hour 13 minutes can quickly get boring if you don’t get drawn in, and while the album flows with barely noticeable gaps between songs this can make the album sound samey as there isn’t a huge variety between each song. However, while it can definitely be a grower, taking several listens to fully appreciate, Sunset Mission is an excellent album that should appeal to any fan of jazz or ambient music and also even doom metal fans due to the uneasy gloomy doom-inspired atmosphere throughout.



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user ratings (183)
Chart.
4.2
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
username345
January 8th 2009


594 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Surprised these aren't more popular here. I always thought they had quite a large following even in metal circles despite being jazz. Maybe it's just because it's so difficult to find them with that sputnikmusic search bar...

username345
January 8th 2009


594 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Ach, the title's messed up somehow...

charlesfishowitz
January 8th 2009


1794 Comments


nice ampersand lolololol

SnackaryBinx
January 8th 2009


2309 Comments


nice tracklist and album cover lolololol

username345
January 8th 2009


594 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Damn. I added this review on the proper Bohren & Der Club Of Gore page, dunno what happened.

Waior
January 8th 2009


11460 Comments


All is forgiven. I love jazz in my metal. Or the other way around.

Bands should name themselves more appropriately for the sake of the Sputnik band search.

Willie
Moderator
January 8th 2009


16051 Comments


What the band actually do though is move all the way to the other extreme in the complete opposite direction
That sentence is a little redundant or at least repetitive...
I like your reviews because you consistently review shit I've never even heard of (except for Psychotic Waltz)...



Pebster49
January 9th 2009


2993 Comments


this sounds really good, checking out there myspace right now

psilocybin
January 9th 2009


74 Comments


Black Earth > Sunset Mission

Dolores is pretty good.

aburrido15
January 9th 2009


6 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Quote:
Black Earth > Sunset Mission

Dunno, I preffer Sunset Mission over Black Earth... Meh, maybe it's because I got into Bohren through Sunset.

spoon_of_grimbo
January 9th 2009


2241 Comments


great review, this sounds really interesting, gonna check this out.

Mendigo
January 9th 2009


2299 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I only know Black Earth and last year's Dolores so far, but they're both awesome albums. Gonna get this one as well.

Mendigo
January 9th 2009


2299 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

they're one of the very best bands to listen to while studying, btw ;)

username345
January 9th 2009


594 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

That sentence is a little redundant or at least repetitive...


That's true. I edited it a bit.

And I like this bit more than Black Earth, but not by much and quite a bit more than Dolores.This Message Edited On 01.09.09

fireaboveicebelow
January 9th 2009


6837 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

this is absolute aaaa love this

AngelPhoenix
January 9th 2009


2764 Comments


Not sure how this is metal. I hear no metalness at all. That being said, this is really really good, if perhaps not my cup of tea. This Message Edited On 01.09.09

Alucard125
April 15th 2010


535 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Ive written so many essays to this album. It's perfect background music at night.

Tillius
April 25th 2010


90 Comments


Wow, just discovered this album tonight and can't stop listening. Great stuff. Exactly what I was in the mood for.

cirq
April 25th 2010


9264 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

comus.

PanasonicYouth
April 25th 2010


7412 Comments


fuck man summary alone makes me wanna hear this



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