Apodiablosis
Spiral


4.0
excellent

Review

by Zion USER (4 Reviews)
January 18th, 2012 | 55 replies | 2,646 views


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Part music, part bad dream... a swirling vortex of sentient, homicidal static.

3 of 3 thought this review was well written

A decade ago I stumbled upon the pseudo-scientific oddity of consciousness altering musical experimentation, under a number of names. It has since taken many forms palatable to the mainstream, such as brainwave frequency music for use in sleep and meditation. But the outer realms of that fringe in itself was a different beast entirely. There were several, now sadly defunct, websites for artists whose aural experiments were designed to dig deep into the subconscious and stir things up. I remember one night when I had to rip my headphones off when an otherwise unassuming track started blasting various layers of static and other white noises into my ears. It didn't simply startle me, it filled me with absolute terror on some level that I couldn't even rationalize. I felt as though reality itself was ripping apart at the seams.

Though such artists are hard to come by now, the world is not without its dabblers in chaos. Apodiablosis is one such project which is either oblivious to, or actively confronts, the comfort zones of its listeners. Very few albums are as unforgiving as Spiral. As big of a deal killer as that may sound, I prefer to approach it as one might approach psychotropics; with curiosity, a willful suspension of rationality, and certainly not without a bit of hesitation.

The highlight of Spiral is the wall-of-sound approach to ambient used in tracks such as "Kingseeker." The howling, even thundering synths coalesce and crash like massive waves, lending an overwhelming and thoroughly captivating feel to the album as a whole. There is the feeling of a dark force brewing in some distant tower, summoning the blackest winds to do some madman's bidding. Like Apodiablosis' previous offering Tardigrade, the ebb and flow of these static waves is the central theme of many tracks, however the strongly mechanical feel of Tardigrade is replaced with much more variety on Spiral.

Even so, Spiral is meandering at times. As a purely creative work and independent release, don't expect recognition of norms or boundaries. It's a glimpse into a mental workspace in which anything can happen. "Nagelring" is dominated by the hammering of the bass strings of a piano. A repetitive dirge, but one brief enough to not become ineffective. "Metalgrid" is like the endless crashing of cymbals from a thousand directions. Even with the company of various otherworldly melodies scattered throughout the track, it is unrelenting and harsh. "Dwarf Star" begs to be played at full volume. Its variation on the static ebb and flow is bigger and faster than in the longer tracks. Even after "Kingseeker" I find myself surprised at the level of intensity found here. "Can it get any more hectic? ... apparently so."

"Tread" is the most distinctly different track on the album. It begins with an excerpt of a radio speech given by Winston Churchill in 1934, one in which he elaborates upon the growing threat to the pacifistic tendencies of England. His speech, which in its entirety begins with a call for his listeners to weigh his words with the same attention and thought he had given to them, is cut short here. Breaking through from another channel, the almost joyous sounds of war drums, rockets launching, and propellers crash through, like a column of tanks rolling over Churchill's eloquent, if dire address.

The closing track "Coelacanth" is the most akin to the terrifying static that found its way to my ears a decade ago. The screaming, ear piercing waves do their best to trigger hallucinations or hysteria. On that theme, the album ends abruptly. Gunshots, panic, screaming, and then silence. Spiral isn't an easy listen, even for a fan of experimental music. It's not a quirky friend you invite over for dinner, it's the shadowy stranger you invite in from a downpour, whose face is only revealed to you in flashes of lightning. Each flash, a changed expression, a smile growing more maniacal, or is it your imagination?


user ratings (7)
Chart.
3.9
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Eclecticist
January 18th 2012



3863 Comments


So is this ambient or drone?

Zion
January 18th 2012



812 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I had a hard time deciding what to call it. Mostly drone, I suppose, but that would even be a bit misleading. I probably shouldn't have listened to it while reviewing it, because I kept getting distracted. If you've heard Tardigrade (and if not, Ovrot will hook you up, this is his project) this is less drone than that. I don't know if there's a better genre to call this. Horror-drone. lol

Eclecticist
January 18th 2012



3863 Comments


Hm well I am not a fan of categorizing music into genres but I was just curious as to which genre would this style of music best fit into if the reviewer had to generalize. Your review makes the album sound interesting so I will more than likely download and listen to this later in the day.

Zion
January 18th 2012



812 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

The most general category I could put it into is definitely "experimental." The only thing that kept it from a higher rating in fact was that the musical aspect of it is very minimal. Only in "Tread" is there a distinct beat for instance, and that's only because of the military theme of that track. I guess I should have pointed out in the review that otherwise there is really no percussion anywhere in the album. It's a big swirling vortex of sentient static that sounds like it wants to kill you. Which I just changed the summary to reflect, at the expense of sounding completely ridiculous.

Eclecticist
January 18th 2012



3863 Comments


Haha that sounds awesome! I will definitely check this album out.

Btw I love that your picture is of "Streams Inwards", I recently pinned that as one of my favourite albums of all time.

Zion
January 18th 2012



812 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I don't know why I haven't reviewed any of MDG's music, they are easily in my top 10 favorite bands. I hope their next singer is as good as the guy who left though

Zion
January 18th 2012



812 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Also, I don't know if Ovrot ( http://www.sputnikmusic.com/profile.php?memberid=442479 ) has this uploaded anywhere or not. If not, give him a shout and he'll get this to you. I reviewed it not just to support a fellow sputniker but because it is definitely unique stuff, and I'd like to see how the project evolves.

Eclecticist
January 18th 2012



3863 Comments


Yea but their music isn't so focused on the vocals, it's mostly the instrumental layering and cosmic riffs that hook the listener in (imo).

Zion
January 18th 2012



812 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I concur with that, and honestly you wouldn't have known that The Tatterdemalion Express and Draining The Waterheart had different singers. Something about Chileans, I don't know. They got the doom metal vocals down. Juan has a new project now if you didn't know, it's called AstorVoltaires. It's pretty interesting, maybe I'll review that. It has elements of doom but is much more just spacey mellower stuff.

Nikkolae
January 18th 2012



4389 Comments


isnt this like Ovrot's band?

Digging: Corrupted - Paso Inferior

Eclecticist
January 18th 2012



3863 Comments


Lol I don't think it has anything to do with the singers being Chilean but they certainly do have the doom metal vocals down. I didn't know that Juan had a new project, maybe I will check that out instead of this haha kidding but I am actually very interested in hearing that as well so thanks for the heads up!

Zion
January 18th 2012



812 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yep Nikkolae. If by band you mean, Ovrot alone hunched over a computer in the dark somewhere (that's what I imagine anyway.)

Nikkolae
January 18th 2012



4389 Comments


lololol casting spells on vampirefreaks?, good review btw

Ovrot
January 18th 2012



10253 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

"It's a big swirling vortex of sentient static that sounds like it wants to kill you."

yeah
that's basically it

Thanks for the review man, I appreciate it. It's a really good review too.

http://www.mediafire.com/?p3do3v0wv9adgqx
link to the album is there


Ovrot
January 19th 2012



10253 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

/cough cough

Zion
January 19th 2012



812 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

You should have that cough looked into

Ovrot
January 19th 2012



10253 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

it's terminal

Oathbreaker
January 19th 2012



1649 Comments


Is this (http://www.last.fm/music/Apodiablosis) the last.fm page? 6 listeners? kvlt

Oathbreaker
January 19th 2012



1649 Comments


"Ovrot alone hunched over a computer in the dark somewhere" Well that explains it.

Ovrot
January 19th 2012



10253 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

what
i didn't make a last.fm
wonder who did that



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