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Atten Ash – The Hourglass

Atten Ash
The Hourglass
by Bränisläv Stänojević at 24 March 2015, 6:31 PM

Quite interesting sounds, the pattern and the roll this band's giving to us; a gloomy night-sky over a sleepy land dressed in pale – would that fit in the concept of ATTEN ASH? This full-length of pitch-black emotion, an aggression inside a slow-motion, a classic finesse of Death\\Doom Metal with addition of melodies, was recorded in 2012, as an independent release, but then Hypnotic Dirge Records took the strings and re-released it, last month.

The whole story behind these Death Metal Doom-heads started back in 2011, by James Greene, who managed to write the album foundations. Along, he befriended rest of the crew and they carried on finalizing the album to its today's shape. Placed in North Carolina, this trio is hailing an interesting approach to one of the oldest Metal genres, adding harmonic guitar lines of Melodic Death Metal and doping it in heavy-taking atmosphere.

This manifest kicks off with “City in the Sea”; a true patten of what this whole genre\\sub-genre should be about, and what bands should honor if planning to make a vast of applauds and good marks from Melodic Metal audience. A battle, a true war of balance and tempos, going up and down from fast riffing to slow one, almost balladic narrating with clean vocals, and yet the massive change and a new path within growls. Third one in line is tagged under the name “Not as Others Were” - jumping off among others; song that DAYLIGHT DIES fans will love to listen, and I admit, I am proud to say I'm one of those. Again, this entity shows you the true mania of vocals colliding, and the conflict of two ways in singing, but I cannot escape the feeling that this is too familiar and something I often listen to.
Labels I would point out as my number ones in this album is final one - “The Hourglass” and “Born”. Both of them I find as a true class, and both of them most surely be would in my playlist. Dazed in MDM with slightly doomish background and epic chores are the brightest spots of this debut album; yet I cannot resist finding too many links to previous works by OCTOBER TIDE and some SLUMBER, a fine, fine circle of artists you're swaying among.

Now I will divide this review, in here, in this part, I'll be subjective and as a possible customer\\fan of the music, I'll speak off my thoughts; as a complete admirer of this genre, whole dream-land within Melodic Metal, whether Death\\Doom, pure Melodic Death or Doom with all the additives, I cannot keep my focuses on to this deed. These almost 50 minutes of the album's melodies could not make me focus nor kept my clarity; DAYLIGHT DIES, SLUMBER, RAPTURE, NOVEMBRE, SATURNUS, ENSHINE and even some BE'LAKOR; too many, insignificant bands in this case, dashed though my wit listening your album. I am not saying you aren't skilled, and NO, I am not calling them out as a rip-off; I will never disrespect their talent nor ideas, but this is too, too damn similar to all of mentioned artists. Maybe Barre Gambling brought too much of DAYLIGHT DIES era to the work, and then also suggested they're taking shape after all of them, but to me as a unit, this makes a slight issue. I would not like to see people to judge them based on some limits and links they are having with them, but I think I know a few who would, and myself would mind that creative approach, a bit, too.

Grading this whole assignment with a seven; their form, pattern, aggression, passion deserve to be preached about inside Metal-spheres, your vocals are out of this world, sick riffing, sick; I salute you guys.

3 Star Rating

1. City in the Sea
2. See You…Never
3. Not as Others Were
4. Song for the Dead
5. Born
6. First Day
7. Waves of Siloam
8. The Hourglass
Barre Gambling – Lead Guitar, Synths
James Greene – Clean Vocals, Drums, Guitars
Archie Hunt – Harsh Vocals
Record Label: Hypnotic Dirge Records


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