Wednesday 5 March 2014

Mist of Nihil- Buried Laments (Review)

Mist of Nihil "Buried Laments" (February 2014)

On their 2014 release “Buried Laments” Mist of Nihil deliver an overwhelmingly morose brutality in the album’s five songs. Though the songs are heavy (there’s no doubt about this), they all have an overbearing weight of something dismal and grim, flooding in to our thoughts. This album combines complex rhythms, technical beats and riffs, and a sound that constantly drives forward despite its weight.

The album has a powerful sense of doom, so that’s a great success. But it also keeps listeners interested. It’s not so gloomy that it becomes boring and it’s not so speedy and brutal as to loose it’s crushing morose aura.

Songs on this album have a really entrancing unity in the instrumental structure. There seems to always be a centre around which the more finite and fleeting aspects of the song form an ephemeral husk—or a layer of dark clouds. Songs on this album are united around a unifying rhythm. An Ebb and Flow of doomed tranquility. So when the band deliberately disrupts the unity of the riff, you really notice it, and this is one of the more unique ways Mist of Nihil keeps us on our feet.

The line up consists of:  Panos Leakos – Vocals, George Griever – Guitars, Thanassis Kg – Guitars, Nicolas Nast Alexandropoulos – Bass, Makis Vouros – Drums. In my humble opinion, this is a group of musicians who all share a vision of what their sound is.

Something that many listeners might notice immediately is the centrality of the drums on this album. The beats form a bedrock we might say. And the guitars seem to accomplish a very difficult balance: both heavy and intricate—both peripheral and central (I include the bass among the guitars). Mist of Nihil’s vocals are really interesting. Panos doesn’t diverge from his relatively central range, only going lower or higher with (what feels like) the permission of the rest of the band. This truly contributes to the band’s phenomenology of the morose.

I have a good feeling about this album. I enjoy the sounds, the song structures, and the lingering atmosphere of gloom. A very strong album that seems less about the overcoming and more about the enveloping of hope and despair into the same muted syllables.

I feel celebratory in my lament.

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