#Acathexis Immerse

3 min read

Band: Acathexis
Title: Immerse
Date of release: 20 March 2024
Country: International
Label: Amor Fati Productions / Extraconscious Records
Format reviewed: High-quality digital recording

The clean guitar notes that start Acathexis album Immersed hit my tired ears as I take my place in the replacement bus in the middle of a rough day of train travel. Drained and uprooted after intense days I now anticipate delays and missed connections. After a few seconds of a dreamlike melodic arpeggio the distortion takes over and a long high pitched shriek captures my full attention. This is when I realise that my problems are small after all. Everything will work out and if it doesn’t, well, how bad can it be. I lean back and let the music take me far away.

The slow and steady flow along with the long and winding melodies repeated in cycles and spirals and the long, cold screams of the vocalist bring memories of the early works of Thy Light. The production is smooth and the ambiance takes me to barren lands. Still there is a softness to it, like those fields of purple heather between the mountains on high altitudes. I let myself be swept away, allowing my problems to shrink at the distance.

As the music sweeps its comforting mountain breeze around me at the first listen I don´t really care about anything but the sense of relief. At the second spin I start to hear the subtle details and my appreciation for the arrangement grows. The vocalist, though always slow and cold with mountainous reverb, moves from high pitched shrieks to chest voice to low growling without losing intensity. The melodies come and go, slowly repeated and changed, sometimes in the background and sometimes moved to the centre with the solo guitar. The solos range from clean and warm to distorted in an airy and cold way that enforces the feeling of the barren mountains.

At this point I look through the lyrics. As I read the long sentences, unbound by conventional metric rules but still poetic in a dry and simple way, the experience of emptiness and desolation grows. Yet a sense of comfort is coming through the words. I am not alone in this desolate place.

If I would change anything in this album I might suggest more separation between instruments in the production. The barren and desolate feeling might have come through stronger with a less smooth production with more space between the sounds. The synthesised violin that enters in the third track took me by surprise and threw me out of my immersion for a while. The melody is beautiful but the timbre breaks off from the soft and organic feeling of the album. Had this melody been played with the airy distorted guitar my mountain meditation in the heather had been enhanced instead of cut short.

That being said, when it is time to stop the music and return to reality I am in a more rooted and centred state of mind than I have been for days. Hours on trains and busses and crowded stations have passed without my noticing. This is a solid 8/10. Ask Den Hängde

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8/10: To Greatness and Glory
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