Review Summary: The wine is gone, the mood is set.
There is an easy way to write this review; hyperbole spewing onto the page, describing a visceral, oppressive anecdote to the devil himself. Sure, that sounds fun but Erdve’s debut almost lives up to the exaggerated adjectives, capturing the album’s very soundscape under an umbrella of excellently placed marketing terms ready to engage the very attention of listeners like me. Vaitojimas
has a chance to be the premier extreme metal record circa 2018 rejecting simple genre classifications. Covered head to toe in sludge, built from the foundations of post metal and blackened hardcore, this Lithuanian outfit not only meld a titanic sound into a thirty-seven minute display of shockingly high level content, but also defy simply being called yet another black metal band. Metal has become a pool with an endless depth. With less and less bands sticking to the formulaic four chord structures, the music itself is allowed to build, shape and develop into compositions as beautiful as they are heavy.
Like any decent bottle of red there’s those who can appreciate the finer details, enjoying the textures and the subtle nuances offered. Equally, there are also those who empty the contents in one hit, missing what can be offered if it’s only allowed the time to sink in, only getting the bare minimum of the bold flavour. Erdve’s Vaitojimas
defines this very metaphor, being the tumultuous example of an excellent wine; given time, a chance to breathe and the patience to simply be enjoyed for what it is.
is a titan, capable of crushing metaphorical skulls, relentlessly using its driving riff work to culminate a passive atmosphere that brings listeners to the very edge of suffocation, but gentle where and when it needs to be. Opening with the album’s tumultuous title track, Erdve make a strong statement. The sheer heaviness of the track (and “Prievarta”) helps identify the core values of what Vaitojimas
will offer upon the first or even hundredth listen. Considering that Vaitojimas
is a debut makes this all the more impressive and while tracks like “Prievarta” leech beautiful damage, the sensual tones of “Apverktis” display a true masterstroke of song writing ability. Contrasting pummelling sludge with perfect minimalist tones Erdve’s 2018 record punches through the speakers with a welcome embrace of noise.
Even as I sit here, mulling my thoughts over an empty glass of red I can enjoy the simplicity of Erdve’s 2018 record. It’s not “simple” in a conventional sense. Rather, the ability to blend almost catchy riff work with the agonizing screams, juxtaposed to the bass driven clean passages that permeate throughout the length of the record allow true enjoyment, unhindered by polarising motifs or overbearing theology. Instead of bringing something contrite and overbearing into an allocation of death-loving atmospheric sludge built on the foundations found in the band’s hardcore stylistic choices. Vaitojimas
is far from an accessible triage of sludge metal goodness, but it’s not hard to find yourself listening to Erdve’s Lithuanian enchantments with ease, and more importantly – with great quality. It seems I did indeed take the easy way in giving my critical analysis, the hyperbole came easy. Overall Erdve takes its place on the cusp of over-achieving on its own delivery. Vaitojimas
stands as an early album of the year contender, even if it’s not certain of achieving the status. Fairly, there are those that won’t take the time to enjoy this capsule of rage, that’s their loss.