Golden Ashes – In the Lugubrious Silence of Eternal Night

Rating: 3.5/5
Distributor/label: https://www.oakenpalace.com
Released: 2020
Buy Album: https://oakenpalace.bandcamp.com
Band Website: https://www.facebook.com/oakenpalacerecords/?__tn__=%2Cd%2CP-R&eid=ARACin0N61fm0xSu1dyS9t5N3rYw_-H21U6n78WOTVvdd4gpmcuiikPhqE7nPLU8E5StyraZTd0sIZg3

Band line-up:

Maurice de Jong – Everything

Tracklisting:

1. As Sacred Bodies Wither Into Nothingness
2. Let Death Stalk My Enemies, Let The Grave Swallow
3. Amongst The Mossy Tombs
4. When Every Word Uttered Is As Whip Cuts Into Flesh
5. From Grace Into Utter Ruin
6. In The Lugubrious Silence Of Eternal Night
7. Black Mouths Murmur Black Prayers
8. Death Came With The Golden Dusk

Review:

Golden Ashes is a black metal project on Oaken Palace Records, that will be releasing its sophomore album ‘In the Lugubrious Silence of Eternal Night’ on the 1st of May, 2020. It follows 2018’s EP ‘The Desolation’, 2019’s full length ‘Gold Are the Ashes of the Restorer’, and 2019’s EP ‘The Golden Path of Death Acceptance’. The mastermind behind the madness is Maurice de Jong, known for his involvement with Gnaw Their Tongues, Aderlating, Astral and many others. He also plays all instruments on his latest release.

Is the LP any good? Yes! All elements come together, beautifully. The highly dominating keyboard sounds are pretty old school and cheap sounding in that classic way (think Burzum, but more harmonically adventurous), and the blast beats that are more in the background are tinny and even resemble heavy rain! Very atmospheric. The screamed vocals kind of add to the textures, rather than them leading the way, only making the music more quirky. All in all, the album has a bit of an unusual character, but in the world of black metal, the album still isn’t exactly ‘weird’. 

There isn’t too much variety on the album instrumentally speaking, but every song does have its own personality. You could call the whole effort ‘consistent’, and of course there’s nothing wrong with that, at all. The harmony throughout is very intelligent and the composer clearly knows his voice leading rules. That’s fortunate, as the chord progressions are the backbone of the overall sound. Maybe fadeouts at the end of the pieces would be better, to add to the more hypnotic feel the musician seems to be going for. Obviously when literally every song has a surprise, sudden ending, it’s not a surprise, anymore. 

To sum up, if you like bands like early Behemoth (e.g. their ‘Storming Near the Baltic’), you won’t be disappointed with Golden Ashes, this time around. Its album cover of clouds in golden sunlight gives you an idea of what to expect – dreamy, yet creepy moods that will take you away to some place else; a place most would hate going to, let’s face it, but not BM fans, obviously. The soft keys are kind of cloud-like too, you could say. Definitely give this a listen if you like things raw and retro, but maybe not if you’re into more pounding, polished and heavy black metal.

Review by Simon Wiedemann
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