Band: Star Devourer
Release date: 14 May 2019
Format reviewed: FLAC
Man and the space has been a topic we all grew up with once. The sci-fi books, the sci-fi movies and series, the comics, and of course the geopolitical war in all aspects including which nation will send more spaceships into the night sky and which planet will be conquered by whom…The space – something strange, beautiful and terrifying in the same time.
In my childhood, the sci-fi movies coming from the western world were strictly limited and most of the time they were something mystical and hiding magical secrets as the space has always hidden such secrets to be explored by the mankind. I’ll just mention here the “Blake’s 7” series for example which was the first such move I watched and I loved some much as a child. “Jena, teleport me NOW!”
The sci-fi topic is not among the most explored in the heavy music though, and especially in the black metal. Part of the genre is connected with eternity and immortality, the glorious nightskies and the night powers, rather to literal journeys into the unknown. The extraterrestrial is a new territory, and I would mention a couple of bands like Covenant/The Kovenant, Mesarthim, Lumnos, Imperialist, Hoth, Almyrkvi etc, which dig the stars from THAT perspective. And here comes the latest – STAR DEVOURER. A sci-fi atmospheric black metal project by the mastermind standing behind Winter Dynasty. It is inspired by the Cosmos, the Space Horror, the Science Fiction. The debut album “Contact” is built like a whole movie experience, including dialogues in the spaceship, and the fear of the first contact IN the spaceship. THEY ARE HERE!
And if the albums of the mentioned above bands take us more on a journey into space and stars, the eight songs here take us on a complete adventure ON the red planet for 55 minutes. The music? It is mostly mid tempo atmospheric and melodic black metal, with lots of synth backgrounds, orchestrations and ambient parts. Contact is partly like a soundtrack of the dark sci-fi movie, and partly like captivating black metal record. The guitars are raw, the overall sounding is raw – sometimes hit and curved by a hertz wave from unknown transmitter…and you can hear the silent presence!
The tracks are long enough but as I already mentioned very captivating. “Contact (Phase I)” has an amazing breakdown in the middle turning into eerie ending. “The Arrival (Phase I)” begins heavily, just to drown in absolute atmospheric heavy-synth BM. “The Arrival (Phase II)” wins with its chopped rhythm and saluting drums, drown in the darkness of the nothingness…”Oblivion” is slower, soaked by mesmerizing keyboard layers, suggesting sadness and impossible illusions. “Contact (Phase II)” contains so fkn amazing tremolo and emotional riffs (not really typical patters for BM, rather to melodic death/doom) and great variety.
In general, this is another keyword for “Contact” – the variety of the record. It doesn’t drown, but keeps the listener excited, leading into darker places and darker spaces. It is a “dream within a dream”, coming from the Underground scene. STAR DEVOURER really managed to take me on a journey and made me experience it all. And this journey is definitely worthy. Yes, it is strange and beautiful, but it is terrifying. The secrets that me and you will find OUT THERE will get us into oblivion forever. We are going to be devoured by endless BLACK among the cold stars. 8.5/10 Count Vlad
8/10 To Greatness and Glory
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