March 15, 2015

Review - 'Saturnalia Temple: To The Other'

Saturnalia Temple - To The Other (2015)

The Ajna Offensive

Review by Blak Wulfaz

Long heavy droning soundscapes opening up the void and once it is open, Sweden's Saturnalia Temple make themselves comfortable once the beginning riff comes in. Ominous and monotonous, the repetitive mantra creeps up from the shadows welcoming in the oncoming ritual. The band has deep a comfort in keeping the vibe within a trance like state. They are sons of the riff, and with only a few to spare per song, they understand that less is more when driven by a few fuzz pedals and full stacks.

The style they bring on the first song is very energetic and focused. It rides its single riff for the entire span of its audio assault. The vocals are scarce but always accent the right moment when they come into the fore front. But that was just one journey. When the music makes its way forward the sludge-crusted swamps of the doomy south latch on to your ears. It has the speed of a funeral procession, the vibrations of a voodoo ritual, and the psychedelic trance of worlds ago.

I am quite fond of how the vocals are drenched in reverb, and delay making them come from beyond, as if a legion of men speaking at once, directly at you as you spin and sway to the boggy rhythm. The pummeling bass keeps the weight on your chest and presses hard. The mix and mastering of this record is truly something to behold as a gem. Everything flows effortlessly together and encases you within its spell. As the walk within realms continues to make its way further and further from your body, you feel your spirit disconnect and become weightless. The tempo shifts into an up-beat chant to the stars and becomes a marching pulse. The militant atmosphere of heavy bass driven, reverberating doom. These gentlemen sure know their stuff.

As the record continues, it follows a very loose pattern. The rhythmic vibes of otherworldly ceremonies marry into the fuzz drenched rumblings. The riffs are few in between but they are so welcoming that the mind gets lost in trance as they become one with the sounds. The heavy occult energy being barked out from behind the wall of sound swirling freely projecting its harsh glimmer. The band relies more on droning incantations of repetition and whispering spells of a world within the veil that we cannot see. But where one trance ends, another is sure to begin. It never ends and never lets its grasp upon your throat loose.

Breaking out from the spheres of black light, releasing its heavy esoteric drenched mantras this record is truly a masterpiece within the world of doom. It harks beyond the physical window of reality to bring into our sense of awareness this energy that does not belong. It is dark, it is magical and it is all intertwined into seven hymns to make its peace with your memory and dig itself comfortable.


1. Intro + SazelSorath
2. To The Other
3. Snow of Reason
4. March of Gha'agsheblah
5. Black Sea of Power
6. CrownedWithSeven
7. Void

To The Other is released by The Ajna Offensive and is available to order now.

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