Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Рожь - "Один сажень" [2019]

Artist: Рожь
Title: Один сажень
Genre: Funeral Doom Metal, Dark Ambient
Country: Russia
Release date: 2019

Track List:
  1. Один
  2. Платье под железом
  3. Головы
  4. Сажень
There's not much info about this project (whose name literally means "Rye"), apart from it being an one-man band from somewhere in Karelia, started by the dark ambient musician known as Vladimir Frith. The release notes for this EP say it also features artwork and some female vocals by Olga Volgina. Anyway, vocals are mostly unnoticeable on there, and the whole EP feels like a mostly instrumental work, roughly equally split between doom metal (with also some elements of black metal on track 3) and dark ambient parts. Apparently it wasn't metal enough to be included in Metal Archives, yet in my opinion it's not only an unambigiously metal release, but one of the best doom metal albums to come from Russia in the last few years.

It's a concept EP which, according to the release notes, tells the story of a long dead old man (who apparently was a hermit but no one now remembers neither his name, nor the language he spoke, nor his looks, nor his motives to live alone in the wilderness), whose log house became a sacred place for Karelian shamans. The author himself admits having tried to "connect" with the spirit of that man - of course, without any success - just to understand that he simply enjoys being alone among the nature of Karelia. Thus the overall atmosphere is clearly inspired by the Karelian nature and the mentality of the people in Russian North. Would recomment it to those who liked Shexna and are looking for other doom metal releases with similar themes, although this EP is very different in terms of sound.

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