Asofy, the prince charming of suicidal-depressive black metal, returns with a new split, accompanied by fellow countryman Sleeping Village, boot-land’s foremost metallic shoegaze project.
In this split, each band presents one song, displaying their current mood. In that manner, Asofy turned more polished, while Sleeping Village recruiting sharper attitude that is gazing into the eyes of the beast with no shoes.
This EP contains both the similarity and difference between the two bands, besides the generic definitions. For instance, musical chairs: Tryfar, Asofy’s mastermind, is also the Sleeping Village vocalist; whilst in this recording Asofy’s vocals are done by Empio – overall a great deliverer; his vocals are another brick in the wall of suicidal black metal: deep, pitchy and agonized. Although both send their throats down the abyss,the song suffers a bit the absence of the vocal trademark. At the neighbors front porch, Tryfar’s throat strengthening the black side of SV, for a crucial charataristic of shoegaze is the soft and dreamy clean vocals; his ranting voice eliminate the cloud-like feeling of this sub-genre within the fuzzy guitars. However, the distant yet clear production puts the vocals a bit under the guitars layer, hence the outcome is the exact bland of eternal gazing and black winds.
As hinted before, this EP holds a statement about a new path for Asofy: more intensity and somewhat livelihood (as far as this term suits depressive black metal), more sharp edges, further exploration of the sub-genres in which the band dwells.
The name of the EP also implies of something else than the usual titles of the genre and correspond with the golden days of the black metal of the first decade – raw, cold and well-produced. Do not mistake, this is no Thorns nor Dodheimsgard. The quality of the production does not lessen the generic essence, the gloom still lies in the heart of it and we can hear its core much better, through and within the vaguely-distorted, fuzzed-out and Tear stained clean guitars.
SV’s effort starts with a buzz. A justified one, if you ask me, and hell of a lot darker and heavier from their wonderful album, “Fragments”. Then the heavy stuff comes. SV took the eminent blackest distortion, pushing it away from the thick layers of light dreams, into the realms of what can be sought as nightmare. But what lies behind that dreadful and so often black metal related sobriquet? A shade of bittersweet melody can run through it, as the end of the tunnel, to which you won’t reach. Not in this dream. True, in order to slide “To the Harsh Corners of Reality”, SV grant us crimson thorns. Oh no, the shoegazing black metal is all but nice and kind. This is the spearhead of a sub-genre, coming into being in the vast fields of definitions, or, to simplify it – a depressive-shoegaze song; the uttermost grief, the wretched vocals vs. the almost gentle distortion and the illuminated apertures. As always, the truth lies in the middle and that’s the uniqueness of SV.
Asofy’s song, “Il Silenzio per Parlare”, almost 13 minutes of another journey in the bleak landscapes of the wrecked human soul. The band adopts here much thinner sounds than before, that allow the clean and distorted guitars dwells in more convenient manner, like two barriers guarding the feeble heart and each other. The magnificent structuring of the song manifests why Asofy is wisely and gently balancing their way to those who appreciate the enormous capacities of the depressive black metal – the sudden climax, almost a glimpse of light (after seven minutes of dead ends). There is something in the melody that can make you believe again, even in the mere grounds of pits of despair. But it’s not the way life works. Soon, you’ll fall again, where you see nothing but black air. And rumbling, aching, incensed guitars. That life-drained voice is carrying all over, coming out of you, yet not yours. It will eventually end, it’s just an EP, but you’re already grey.
That’s life for you.
01 – Asofy: Il Silenzio Per Parlare