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Blood Of The Black Owl: A banishing ritual

13/05/10  ||  Habakuk

Boaaoaaoooooooonnnnnnnnnggggggggggggggg…

… minutes pass…

Goooaaaonnnnnngggggggggggggggggggggggggg…

Okay. What you’ve just read is the first 8 minutes of track one, “Intent (Movement I)” – this disc, as I should tell you, is one continuous song divided into “movements”. U-huh. Well, at this pace I guess this track doesn’t move all too far during its 13 minutes then.

No, no, I’m being mean, sorry. “A banishing ritual” is a sort of funeral doom album, and thus doesn’t intend to move very far anyway. It doesn’t want you to move very far either, but to sit in your dark room illuminated only by your screen displaying a frostbvtten forest wallpaper, and listen. Honestly, that’s not something I find myself doing very often, but I gave this one its fair chance and it caught me in the right moment. The metal genre moniker is probably only partially justified for this, as there is not much guitar playing on this album, only track, pardon, Movement 2 is driven by a fat guitar, the rest is pretty much sloooow, simplistic drumming that turns to tribal percussions once in a while, and massive droning. Very, very rarely this is broken up by some reverb-heavy chants and growls, so most of the time the listener is left alone with a suffocating wall of sound that reveals its facets only during the course of minutes.

The whole “Movement” thing works quite well actually, so everything flows together, with the four tracks Movements still being discernible as they all communicate a slightly different mood, with some more upbeat clean guitar melodies strewn in, or, on the other hand, the aforementioned gooaooong -ing thrown in for good measure, as in “8 minutes”. Now look, if you hate this kind of stuff, stay away, it’ll just make you angry. If you don’t, but dig stuff like Moss (as a band, but maybe also as a sexual stimulant, too) or perhaps the calmer side of Drudkh instead, and do not casually waste your time with friends and other worldly activities, then check this album out, sit back for an hour or two and cleanse your mind or something. It’s actually quite meditative and not bad at all, if you can appreciate it for what it is: Funeral Doom/Forest Meditation Metal.

This is a digitally produced review. No trees were hurt (directly) during the course of its writing.

6.5

  • Information
  • Released: 2010
  • Label: Bindrune
  • Website: Blood Of The Black Owl MySpace
  • Band
  • Chet W. Scott: dressing up as medieval American
  • Daniel Ellis Harrod: carving they’re-not- really-swastikas into trees
  • James Woodhead: subsequent hugging of the latter, thus soothing their spirits
  • Tracklist
  • 01. Intent (Movement I)
  • 02. The statement of will (Movement II)
  • 03. Chant of the captured spirit (Movement III)
  • 04. The final banishing (Movement IV)