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HULDUEFNI / I AM ESPER / PALEOZOIC / SATHANATH
HULDUEFNI / I AM ESPER / PALEOZOIC / SATHANATH
Aliens VS Dinosaurs
(Symbol Of Domination Productions / Satanath Records)
158:29min

This is an interesting and ambitious beast: two discs, four artists, more than two and a half hours of music and a wacky concept. I am using the term "music" very lightly here, and only because it's not a spoken word record: it's somewhere between drone, dark ambient and psychedelia, all of them. The story behind it all is an epic battle between aliens as invaders of the earth and dinosaurs as the defenders of our planet, all wrapped in a colorful comic book artwork. HULDUEFNI from Portugal starts the whole thing off eerily and improvisational, with his multi-layered guitar drones and something that could be vocals. Or drones. Or just noises. Either way, it works… but it just drags on forever with no real direction or climax. Up next is I AM ESPER from the US of A, whose first 2 tracks aren't that far off from the direction of his predecessor. His last track on the disc clocks in at almost 27 minutes and brings the noise in a MERZBOW on codeine way. PALEOZOIC from Belarus opens up disc two ('Dinosaurs') and cools things down a notch with a very ritualistic approach to dark ambient, surrounded by a mystical aura. This is where I would reach for more drugs to fully appreciate what is going on here. The battle finally ends with the Russian SATHANATH – the strongest of all contributions, more electronic, more rhythmic, more interesting. This project is interesting in theory and would have the potential for Cold Meat Industries grandeur… but it falls short, as the whole concept does. It's not as if the audio delivery sounds kinda half-assed, far from it, but the packaging simply ruins it: what is supposed to sound like an epic battle feels more like the soundtrack to a Tom Cruise Scientology "Battlefield Earth“ movie that lasts what feels like 8 hours, including the New Age whale sound meditation music. Nothing really happens, apart from bright and flashy colors on the cover that brutally destroy the mood. ULVER and SUNNO))) created something outstanding with "Celestials“ that looks AND sounds great, and they sure as fuck didn't need any dinosaurs or aliens. While I am a big fan of "curated" art pieces, this doesn't work for me at all. https://symbolofdomination.bandcamp.com, www.satanath.com

Thomas Reitmayer

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