Tuesday, 30 August 2011
[ALBUM REVIEW] Womb of Decay - Descent into Obscure Nihilism
1. Geomagnetic Erosion Beyond the Fields of Horizontal Solar Eclipse
2. Cyclical Sado Nature of the Planets
3. Unearthly Existence
4. Massive Particle Transcendence Indepths Through Wormholes
5. Minimalist Isolated Lifeform
6. Swallowed Into the Shattered Dusk
7. Inharmonious Frozen Sunlight Over the Cathedral Neptune
8. Descent Into Obscure Nihilism
9. Fall Into Sinister Spheres
With the impossible to ignore extravagant song titles such as “Geomagnetic Erosion Beyond the Fields of Horizontal Solar Eclipse” and “Massive Particle Transcendence Indepths Through Wormholes” you’d be forgiven for thinking this album was a bunch of art fags playing some tech prog death garbage or a new Bal-Sagoth release. Far from it, in fact pretty much the polar opposite. Womb of Decay, now central point of focus for former Cenotaph vocalist Batu Çetin, have recently unleashed their debut offering on Turkish label Extreminal Productions. Although it never threatens to break new ground, Descent into Obscure Nihilism is a commendable effort, if at times slightly predictable release of festering funeral doom.
Turkey is not a country which is known for its funeral doom, but Womb of Decay certainly make a fine stab at it. The out and out highlight of this release is Batu’s stunning death gutturals, monstrous and crushing in their execution, they add an interesting dimension to an otherwise fairly passive release. He is obviously experienced in this area and as a result I’ll certainly be looking at his work with Cenotaph, they do just enough to save Descent into Obscure Nihilism from becoming another inoffensive release in a genre which is notorious for its plethora of sub-par Thergothon clones. The music itself is heavier than a pair of concrete boots, passages of dense bass heavy dirges of hypnotic down tuned riffing with Batu’s inhuman roaring on top, of which there is very little variation throughout the full fifty minutes, save for the useless outros to the end of each fucking song. I presume they’re in there to help create atmosphere, but rather than adding anything they end up performing the complete opposite, synthetic organs which rather jarringly interfere with the evil, cavernous atmosphere which Batu manages to execute very well with just a bass, guitar and his vocals. They just serve no discernable purpose whatsoever and are completely obsolete. Other than that, the other major bone I have to pick with this release is the production; it’s just too damn... good? For this type of music I find a much dirtier, low-fi production would help push the atmosphere which Batu is aiming for.
Originality and diversity never is a priority in the funeral doom genre and Womb of Decay don’t try to be anything else. Descent into Obscure Nihilism does succeed in dragging you kicking and screaming into its filth laden clutches for a while anyway at least. Each song manages just about to never overstay its welcome which is a significant problem with a lot of bands in this genre as if there’s an unwritten rule that no song should be shorter than ten minutes, but after a while you realise that it’s all been done before, and better. Fans of Thergothon, Evoken and Dismebowelment may well find something in this, but if you’re a newcomer to this genre, there are better, more established bands to begin with. There’s a lot of promise here, unfortunately it just doesn’t capture the imagination for long enough.
Originally written for Metalcrypt