Damy of Pulvis et Umbra (well… Damy is the band, actually), sent me a copy of the new album Implosion of Pain last week and I’ve been giving it a bit of a listen over the holiday weekend.
First of all, can I just thank him for putting the Moshville Times logo on the back? I do my best to try and plug up-n-coming acts, unsigned bands and the like and to actually get a bit of recognition on the sleeve of a CD really means a lot.
Thankfully, I can now be nice about the album as it’s damn good.
Pulvis et Umbra is a death metal band at its blackened heart, with melodic overtones and a smidgen of post-metal / metalcore about it. The album itself has a sci-fi feel to it so there’s a bit of electronica scattered around here and there, though more as an atmospheric overtone than as a real part of the music.
After a brief intro which sounds like a radio conversation with some background rumblings indicating what’s to come the album launches flat out with “Lost Moon”. This piledriver will ram you into your seat with more force than a Saturn rocket taking off. However, about halfway through the rapid blast beats and face-tearing guitar give way to a traditional metal solo and some clean guitar picking. There’s even a spoken word segue before the song draws to a conclusion.
It’s this variety and breadth of sound that makes the album so good – and all the more impressive being the work of one person (musically, with the help of Alessandro Tuvo on mixing/mastering duties).
The one thing is it is, is unrelenting. Harsh screamed and guttural death metal vocals abound, with guitars that change from crunching rhythm to strident wails at the drop of a hat. Drums and bass keep a fast and heavy rhythm from start to end. This isn’t just an album to put on in the background, this is one to listen to and get involved with.
“Psicostasia” is a lull in the storm. An instrumental with more of a doom/folk feel to it complete with what I assume is a violin or similar. Apologies if it turns out it’s actually a bassoon or a trumpet… [UPDATE – Damy confirmed this for me: “We mixed violin + viola in a lone track (that’s why the sounds is not so easy to recognize) while there’s a short part of Sitar after the spoken intro.” – Mosh]
Stand-out tracks for me are “Implosion of Pain” for it’s brilliant groovy intro and “Lullabye”.
Pulvis et Umbra was signed by Pavement Entertainment a couple of months ago and they’re handling distribution of this beast.