Evoken: A caress of the void
07/08/12 || The Duff
I think out of all the bands going in the funeral doom sub-genre, Evoken take the crown for the best of the bunch. Esoteric’s latest left a bad taste, Ahab too have disappointed recently although both “The Maniacal Vale” and “The Divinity of Oceans” are up there with “The Antithesis of Light” as the sub-genre’s peak; Catacombs seriously lack dynamics and Mournful Congregation are more ethereal than gloomy and overbearing from what I’ve heard of “The Book of Kings”.
As for the band’s history, “Quietus” was a real dark, haunting, dreamy piece of music, “Antithesis…” claustrophobic and evil and now, three years on from the latter masterpiece we have a more straightforward, less otherworldly doom album that is more about pulling the listener down and drowning him/her in swirling currents of agony and self-loathing.
Your going to get downtuned riffs, evidently, but where “Antithesis…” was a layering of black, doom and goth, this is pretty much straightforward crushing; nothing fancy, no real intertwining dynamics – simple, dark, destructive.
You get staples of the doom tag of course, clean guitars that are heavily drenched in delay and despair, twisting lead guitars, bellowing vocals, tortured clean vocals, plodding drums, riffs that crash down and unfurl into black torrents of decay and keyboards to flavour and round it all off.
All said, that’s all there is to say about this Evoken record; it’s textbook. While Evoken are more straightforward than most, I can’t help but feel “Caress of the Void” to be a case of running through the motions. An incredible band, without a doubt, but while this is a different record than the two classics that preceded it, it doesn’t appear much of a progression.
- Released: 2004
- Label: I Hate
- Website: Evoken MySpace
- John Paradiso: guitars, vocals, keyboards
- Nick Orlando: guitars, keyboards
- Craig Pillard: bass, keyboards
- Vince Verkay: drums
- 01. A Caress of the Void
- 02. Mare Erythraeum
- 03. Of Purest Absolution
- 04. Astray in Eternal Night
- 05. Descend the Lifeless Womb
- 06. Suffer a Martyr’s Trial (Procession at Dusk)
- 07. Orogeny