Black Silence / Paroxysmal Descent
Into the Lightless Depths / The Suffering Within
Ruin Productions 2007
This split CD combines the demos from these two Australian hate beasts. The first 6 tracks are from Black Silence who exude an animalistic confidence within their warped walls of raw black metal. The Coldness and Finality of Death starts the Darkthrone-esque fall into the icy abyss and the song closes out with an accoustic passage not unlike material found on Immortal's Diabolical Fullmoon mysticism. Rabid vocals flow forth over underproduced yet atmospheric riffs that bear a passing resemblance to the Nordic ancestors of this black metal style on Into the Lightless Depths. Taking a different approach on the instrumental Abysmal Sorrow, the track flows slowly, at a crawl, with sorrowful riffs that drip with melancholy. Reverting to the harsh cynicism of the early material is A Storm in the Land of Forefathers. Black Silence is solid and enjoyable black metal in the traditional and raw vein.
The final four tracks are from Paroxysmal Descent. Their approach is also raw and harsh but has more of a Burzum feel/production to it and in the way the guitars are utilized. The title track is an exercise in driving mid-tempo black metal with chaotic drumming. An eerie lead runs over the top of the music lending an aura of desolation to the track. The vocals are even more harsh and putrid than Black Silence. The reverb on the guitar strumming really brings to mind Burzum on Wounds of Self-inflicted Misery. I also hear echoes of Katatonia's Brave Murder day here as well. Traversing Lost Dimensions is a keyboard instrumental that is simplistic and really does nothing to enhance the atmosphere on their material though it certainly fits into the the suicidal mood. The final track is Attack which is an Abyssic Hate cover and not at all out of place here as these two Austrialian acts have a lot in common stylistically. Paroxysmal Descent's demo is respectable if unspectacular. I certainly prefer the wild aspects of Black Silence's songs to the more controlled and morose compositions of Paroxysmal Descent. Altogether though it is an enjoyable split that is heavy in harshness and feeling.