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Aisumasen - The Greater Good

The Greater Good
by Louise Brown at 22 April 2019, 7:03 PM

AISUMASEN formed as a Sludge/Doom Metal band during 2009 in Gothenburg, Sweden. Although they've been together for ten years they hadn't bothered to release any albums until this year. From what I read on their Facebook page they spend a lot of their time experimenting with various sounds and styles rather than being focused on making albums. I have to admit I kind of respect that approach since it's a little unusual.

"The Greater Good" is an interesting EP. It has only four songs, yet somehow that manages to be enough to give you a fair idea of what these musicians can come up with as far as music. "Miasma" is slow and brooding as it begins; the growling vocals add to the feeling, making it seem like something primeval and cold. It has a great down-tuned quality to it that keeps you listening. It's not a bright or upbeat track, but it is engaging. The song is also a prime example of how Sludge Metal should sound; doom-filled, super heavy, melodic, distorted and almost mystic at times. "The Nothing Box" is stripped down at first then increases in volume and power as it progresses. It's a heavy song with a vaguely threatening tone to it that keeps you paying attention. I especially enjoyed the vocals that snarled and raged in a low tone, giving the song a seriously creepy feel. It's almost like an audio version of a short suspense film. You can sense the danger, but you stick around anyway because you have to know what is going on. Excellent song!

"The Revealment" reminds me of some early work by VIRGIN BLACK. It has the same sort of bleak quality to it with a beautifully dark melodic tone. It moves along gracefully, going so quickly that I found myself hitting the repeat option a few times. I love the down-tempo guitar solo that begins just after the halfway point and carries the track to its end. My only regret is that the song isn't longer because I could easily listen to another two or three minutes of it. The final track, "Forgora Forinta," is fantastic. The vocals are cleaner, allowing you to appreciate the fact that Alex Losback Holstad has a really interesting voice that's great to listen to. There is a bit of spoken word audio in the track, but it blends in so well that it doesn't hurt the song at all. The backing music becomes extremely heavy as well as much louder, creating some tension that gives way to quiet again as the spoken word audio resumes. At last an eerie synthesizer solo commences, leaving you wondering what in the hell you just listened to. End result? You have to listen to it again because you want to figure it out. I always appreciate songs that force me to think a little.

I don't like to recommend such short EPs normally because it's not a lot of material, which can often leave fans a bit disappointed. However, I have to make an exception for this release. "The Greater Good" is a little eccentric, kind of odd, and completely worthy of your attention. If you're going to be an experimental musician or band who dabbles in metal, this is the right way to do it.

Songwriting: 9
Originality: 10
Memorability: 9
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

  1. Miasma
  2. The Nothing Box
  3. The Revealment
  4. Forgora Forinta

Alex Losback Holstad - Vocals
Nick Holmquist - Backing vocals, guitar
Ian Arcatling - Guitar, bass
Mats Granehag - Bass
Dale Whitaker - Drums

Record Label: Social Blasphemy Records


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