Khors

Mysticism

Paragon Records 2009

Mysticism represents the third full length outing from these Ukrainian heathens.  This is my first experience with this band and I must say I am impressed.  There is an overall sense of dreamlike pagan qualities to the material.  Through the Rays of the Fading Moon walks nighttime paths with Cure-esque bass-lines, nocturnal synths and clean guitars that later develop into thick riffs.  As the next track, Raven's Dance, kicks into powerful and bombastic riffs accentuated by sharply intense keyboards, the dream turns into a an intense waking nightmare especially when the double bass clashes against the swirling guitars.  Winterfall surges forth with mid-tempo riffs, double bass drumming, and grinding deathly vocals.  The subconscious landscapes are brought once again to the surface as the crystalline keys and somber clean notes take center stage.  Pagan Scars is emboldened by sorrowful and evocative guitar notes as well as woodwind styled synth passages.  An ancient mood permeates the instrumental track.  It sets the stage nicely for the more orchestral style of the title track with its midtempo assault with pagan keys and full and powerful guitars.  Helg's vocals are deathly in their powerful delivery.  Finally Red Mirrors dwells in a much more gothic realm with deep clear vocals and a beat not unlike Sisters of Mercy.  The song drifts into light and summery realms that are not unlike a more pagan version of Voivod's Missing Sequences.  Perhaps a slightly off the wall comparison but I feel the connection bears merit.  The production on this album is surprisingly full and clear.  Each instrument is powerful and crystal in its clarity.  While not blown away by Khors I was surprised at how mature and thoughtful the compositions were on Mysticism.  Paragon Records has once again discovered another eastern gem.