Review Summary: Haunted by a beautifully melancholic atmosphere but blessed with outstanding musicianship, this could be one of the most memorable death doom releases of all time.
4 of 4 thought this review was well written
Blank. Depressive. Empty. Your skin feels as if it's crawling across your body and the room feels darker. Those are the feelings this album inspires. The air around you adapts a stale taste and you are stripped of all hope as your own shadow seems perturbed by its own presence. That is the power that it contains. Everything around you appears slower. More bleak. The light of the sun is no longer hidden by the clouds, the clouds now shield you from its invasive rays. Welcome to From Below.
Death doom is a genre that is all about emotion. About the ability to borrow your senses for the duration of its playback and transport you to an unfamiliar, dark world. Marius Strand's one man project The Fall of Every Season's From Below will drain your soul from the first murmuring notes of "From Below" to the very last ring of "Her Withering Petals." The low hum of the droning guitar alongside the creeping beats of the drums set up the stage of a long and bleak journey. The angry growls and melodious cleans by Strand deliver beautifully written lyrics and are nothing short of artful. The feeling that the album delivers is of an out of place peace. Relaxing but disturbing. Each note feels as if it could be the last, each word as if it's the last you'll ever hear. Atmosphere is the word to describe this. But not an atmosphere of safety and of comfort, rather an atmosphere devoid of optimism which stands as the central achievement of this album.
Of course, this atmosphere, this empty feeling, does not just happen. It's the music. The guitar sounds deep, and each strum feels like it could last forever. At times, it seems as if the guitar has a voice of its own, as if it is groaning the lyrics on its own. It also reaches very tranquil highs that feel like they can sing in their own barren abyss. The beauty of the guitar, distorted electric or clean acoustic, is undeniable, but it is not the only instrument that provides such a sound. The drums keep a steady beat that remains very simple and sluggish, but this creates a far stronger feeling than if they were fast and complex. Almost like there is an impression of scarcity. Like each beat is to be "used sparingly." As a cymbal takes a hit, or the bass drum is beat, it's almost like you are taking the hits. The beatings. There is also an occasional piano, which has an even more creeping and ominous sound to it. The notes are played in a harmony that is the Yin to the guitar's Yang, and encompasses its own feeling that never feels foreign but is always a welcome addition to the instrumental team.
Atop instrumental masterwork, atmospheric elegance, sits something that may be one of the strongest points on the entire album. The lyrics. The lyrics throughout the album describe the son of a family that is tormented by death. His and his kin's ordeals. Their tragedies. While the music itself molds the shell of this, but the lyrics fill the inside. The artistic poetry of words that sculpt what is From Below.
Beauty. Sadness. Despair. Some words you may use to describe this album. It has it all; amazing instrumental passages, passionate vocal delivery, and an unforgettable atmosphere. So what's missing? Is something lacking? The answer to both of these questions is nothing. I cannot think of a single thing wrong with this entire album. From beginning to end there is nothing but perfection displayed in this album. This cannot be adequately explained on its own, you must experience it yourself. A modern masterpiece in every sense of the word; this is what music is about.
Fourth review. Really, really good album. I was very hesitant to give this a 5, but when I got to the pluses and minuses I really just couldn't think of anything bad to say about it. As always, feedback, be it constructive critcism or well-spoken praise, is always appreciated.
The content is there, it's just your sentence structures (or lack thereof) are very awkward. You tend to make your sentences very short and follow them with adjectives and descriptions that could have easily been incorporated into the previous sentence, which would help to make it read smoother. For example:
Atmosphere is the word to describe this. But not an atmosphere of safety and of comfort. An atmosphere void of optimism. That is the true art of this album.
"Void" should be "Devoid" and it all could be said as "An atmosphere devoid of optimism and safety is the true highlight of the album; a feat that is the defining characteristic of From Below."
Also, your first paragraph is really pointless, you can give the album this label by working it into the description of the music instead of giving us an exercise in creative writing.
But like I said, the content that could make this review impressive is already there, it just needs to be separated from what doesn't work.
Alright. Fixing the "void" right now. I think I'll change a thing or two in my opening paragraph, but not revamp it completely.
You tend to make your sentences very short and follow them with adjectives and descriptions
It's almost unintentional, but it's just the way I write for now, though I am not sealed off from change. I've got plenty of time to improve my writing style (I'm 15 so I've got quite a bit of time actually... haha).
Nonetheless, your feedback is greatly appreciated. On a side note, have you heard of the band Svartsyn? I know you listen to a good amount of black metal, and I enjoy reading your reviews. So maybe a band to check out if you haven't.
Ah so many young kids coming around nowadays haha. But yeah man this was a damn good review, especially since you're just starting out. Maybe take out the very last part though (the (+) everything, (-) nothing). Definitely keep writing.