Descend into Despair – The Bearer of all Storms (2014)
Domestic Genocide Records
Review by Jude Felton
I sincerely hope that you are having a truly delightful day. Spring is on the horizon, the sun is out and all is looking good in the world. Unfortunately for you, Romania’s Descend into Despair are here to put an end to that joy that you might be feeling; not only end it, but completely destroy it. Welcome to some of the darkest, most depressing death doom/funeral doom that you are likely to hear this year.
2013 gave us the absolute monster of an album, Canto III, from Eye of Solitude, who also has ties to Romania. It was my pick of the year, and it still stands strong as an absolutely fantastic album. Descend into Despair, however, have come along and made an album that is just as dark, and probably even more downbeat, which is no mean feat. Seven songs stretch across a monstrous 90 minutes that will leave you a changed person. Believe me when I say that this is far from cheery music.
In fact it may well be too much for some folk, as crushing riff after crushing riff drive deep into your very soul, sucking what little joy left that you may have. It is, in all honesty, devastatingly good music. The vocals Denis Ungurean are guttural and thoroughly tortured, and serve as the perfect accompaniment to this epic downward descent.
The plan, originally, was to review The Bearer of all Storms about a month or so ago. However, due to its length and tone, it’s an album that really needs time to be fully absorbed. Plus, you really need to be in the right frame of mind to appreciate. The many layers of the music all combine to crush the listener, with even the few moments of musical respite, courtesy of the more orchestral moments, only serving to build up to the next drop into hell.
Doom metal, by its very nature, is a dark and foreboding sub-genre. However, when you very from the traditional doom, into the death or funeral areas of it, it can become almost unbearably oppressive. This is just fine with me and Descend into Despair live up to their name perfectly.
On the first couple of listens of The Bearer of all Storms I thought that maybe the material had been stretched a little too far. Let’s face it; 90 minutes is a lot of music to digest in one sitting.
However, it’s not until you really let the album flow over you a few more times that it really comes into its own, and then you can appreciate that it works wonderfully.
The Bearer of all Storms lives up to its name, throughout its running time, and is quite a magnificent album. If doom is you cup of bloodied tea, this will be right up your street. Personally, I can’t recommend it enough.
1. Portrait of Rust
2. Mirrors of Flesh
3. Pendulum of Doubt
4. Triangle of Lies
5. The Horrific Pale Awakening
6. Plange glia de Dorul meu
7. The Embrace of Earth
The Bearer of all Storms is available now from Domestic Genocide Records.