Thursday, February 12, 2015

CD review: USUL Flames and Blasphemy

USUL
Flames and Blasphemy
3rd Inferno Recordings
This is a one man solo project hailing from Asia (details seem to be intentionally vague) featuring the talents of one Mr. Unlight Warbringer. To my ears it fits loosely into a depressive black metal mold, some very nice and melodic guitar bits with the clean tones captured very well. I found when the composer steps on the distortion and its gets heavy the guitar tones become rather fuzzy, not sure if this is the desired effect or not but it makes the recording sound very “protools” like it was recorded in old mates’ bedroom, which is a shame cos the music is definitely of a quality to rise beyond the status it currently finds itself and really creates a bigger buzz about the band amongst the underground.
The tunes themselves are slow and trance inducing. Designed to capture the elements of solitude. Despite the above mentioned complaints about the guitar tone this was still rather enjoyable and its creator does have a great sense of melody, and despite the length of the songs the compositions never get boring.
The vocals are soaked in reverb and it back in the mix, an interesting effect too, gives it sort of another worldly feel and maybe allows it some accessibility to people who may not be fans of black metal. The lyrical content is blatantly black metal and it the lyrics I think do add to the trance like feeling of the recording as well.
Being a one man project I’m not sure if Mr. Warbringer can play drums as there seems to be little to no percussion on the album, (oddly enough, I didn’t notice this until a couple of songs into the recording) the acoustic guitar left to fill that end of the sound spectrum. In a strange way this adds to the feelings of desolation created in the sound.
Overall this is a pretty nifty little release and is reasonably original too, especially with the electric and acoustic guitars intertwining nicely to create some quite hypnotic little melodies. Overall an enjoyable and esoteric release, it won’t appeal to everyone but is worth the time to give a listen to and decide for yourself. -Reggae