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By Timothy K. Schwader on November 17, 2013
Format: Audio CDComment Sending feedback...
Originally a two-piece drone act akin to, perhaps, Sunn 0))), Altaar has evolved into a many-membered outfit that melds droning soundscapes with rhythmic – and fairly brutal – metal to great effect. This eponymous EP is comprised of two songs with a running time of over 34 minutes. The first track, ‘Tidi Kjem Aldri Att’, features a punishingly rhythmic lead bass line with sparse, Sabbathian drumming underneath, for quite a while before the guitars and other instrumentation kick in. To call this twenty-minute track a sonic journey would not be an off base. The closing track, ‘Dei Absolutte Krav Og Den Absolutte Nade’, opens with a wash of white noise and effects-laden keys (and/or guitars – it’s a bit hard to tell), then opens up into a multi-tentacled beast of black metal style riffing, drumming, and vocalizations at about the four-minute mark. Through a series of peaks and valleys, the soundscapes and the brutality overtake each other again and again through to the climax, making this more like the score to a twistedly evil horror short than anything that would traditionally be called a song. While this is not the type of music I could listen to on a whim during my daily routine, when the timing and mood is right – like when I just need to sit down and edit some writing or sort through a thousand photographs to choose the best ones for the website, or when I feel like scaring the crap out of the neighbors – the sounds of Altaar are nothing short of perfect.
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