Apr 25, 2012
Mar de Grises - Draining the Waterheart ...
Enigma, this is the only way to describe the entity known as Mar de Grises. Five years after their first groundbreaking release ‘The Tatterdemalion Express’ it was hard to fathom how the band could follow-up something so beautifully stunning yet intensely miserable. They found a way and it’s nothing short of divine.
The production is excellent, and it’s a good thing too as this would have lost something had it not been. This album is layered more so than anything that’s ever come before or since. All the of the instruments are doing something different 90% of the time, yet unlike in the jazz improve sense where you expect to see something like this, all the instruments sound cohesive and structured together. This is more a musical movement than a typical album as none of the songs have any repeating parts. This is also less Funeral and more Ambient/Progressive Doom/Death Metal.
The guitars are more or less heavy than on the prior release. They are the atmosphere and go from tight fits of speed and rage to spacey moments of intrigue and wonder. They go from clean to distorted periodically as well as disappear completely from time to time. They make this an epic ride from start to finish. There is a sense of urgency throughout this album as well, almost as if a nervous tension was filling the minds of the architects that crafted this soul purging album. There is a soothing sense amidst the musical chaos however.
The bass adds to the ponderous feel of the guitars. When coupled with the drums its, its own animal. The drums are bombastic and exploratory, highly creative and different. The keyboards more or less provide the background for the all-consuming atmosphere that this album is full of.
The vocals are a mix of clean and growled. They are buried (probably intentionally) in the mix until the latter half of the album. They accent the music over all. Interestingly enough, there are some traditional Doom hallmarks but they are played in such a way that they have a refreshing feel to them.
This is something from a different reality; it’s impossibly to perceive this as something from this planet/galaxy. Like so many bands in the Doom Metal field, this is art in its purest form. This album is a range of emotions from fear to wonder and everything in between. If there is any complaint it’s that this wasn’t released sooner. This is the sixth sense in audio form. They haven’t invented words to accurately describe what this album is.
This is for the lost souls and those seeking something incredibly different. Never will you hear such ethereal heart wrenching somber music that is filled with such an array of awe and sorrow. This is a sprawling masterwork that demands you pay it heed. Listen to this at your own risk as results may vary.
Side note: The special edition of this contains a mini-CD that has one 16:56 long track called ‘Unconscious Passenger’, it’s the bands foray into ambiance. This track, while interesting is ultimately forgettable as it’s beyond minimalistic. This will surely appeal to those who are into the stark emptiness known as ambient. To more accurately summarize the song; if you remove all the Metal from the album at large, as well as the drums, you’d have a pretty good idea of what this is. This get's a 10/10
Mar De Grises Myspace
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