Saturday, May 18, 2024

Full Length Review: Canis Majoris "Eternity Borns from a Moment" (Satanath Records) by Dave Wolff

Project: Canis Majoris
Country: Poland
Genre: Doom/death metal
Format: Digital, Jewel box CD with 8 page booklet (limited to 500 copies)
Label: Satanath Records
Release date: April 28, 2024
The Satanath Records label has consistently introduced me to metal bands with a vision to impart mystery and wonder to the listener. Canis Majoris' debut full-length exceeds most of what I've heard from it. While many metal bands have explored enigmas of the universe in their work, this project infinitely stretches the parameters of this idea.
Through a philosophical perspective on the beauty and emptiness of the universe, and an artistic style illustrating how vast it is, "Eternity Borns from a Moment" both illuminates and subdues. Opening you to the boundlessness of infinite eons, it reminds you of how minute humanity is as it considers the eventual end of all things.
The music was composed and recorded by a musician from Belarus who goes by the stage name Alienus. Canis Majoris began as a doom/death metal project, and he composed the songs with elements of ambient, black metal, and organic and synthesized keyboard tones that greatly intensify the contemplation that went into this work.
For an album that was in the making for about three years, "Eternity Borns from a Moment" displays ambition, imagination, and capacity for thought. The album is played entirely by Alienus with vocals provided by Brut of the Belarus death metal band Raspatory (whose debut full length "Pathopsychology" was released in 2021).
The dissimilitude between space and time, energy and matter, existence and nothingness is evident from the very beginning. As soon as the first instrumental "Space Overture I" begins, it paints a striking picture of the endless black and the stars illuminating it, characterizing the extreme cold of the cosmos. Icy, freezing, piercing, numbing cold.
A total of six "chapters" are presented, consisting of an ambient instrumental and a full song. From what I gathered, they depict the ancient origin and inevitable conclusion of existence, pondering universal cycles, anomalies such as black holes, and exploring the vast expanses of void out there, the isolation of each interstellar object in the midst of all that barren space.
Amidst the doom/death tracks and ambient interludes, "Eternity" features soporific guitars, massive bass, resounding drums, and guttural vocals that seem to emanate from everywhere. This distinctly multilayered keyboard accompaniment reveals a colossal amount of astronomical content, often enhancing the guitars’ interpretation of the temporal and spatial.
Occasionally reminiscent of My Dying Bride, Anathema and November's Doom with elements of choir, gothic metal and industrial, "Eternity" elaborates on the scope those bands explored on their albums, bringing new and unfamiliar musical blueprints from the darkness to the light, extending the songwriting to new lengths of experimentation. In many instances, the album draws the listener hypnotically into the mix, making them feel as though they are a part of the grand scheme of things.
In terms of pushing the boundaries of extreme metal in general, "Eternity" represents another important step forward. Particularly toward its conclusion, which contains some of the darkest and most progressive compositions recorded for it. –Dave Wolff

Alienus: All instruments
Brut: Vocals

Track list:
1. Space Overture I
2. Eternity Borns From A Moment
3. Space Overture II
4. The Birth Of The Universe
5. Space Overture III
6. The Black Hole
7. Space Overture IV
8. The Path Of The Star
9. Space Overture V
10. The Emptiness Of Eridanus
11. Space Overture VI
12. The End Of Civilization

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