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Into The Arcane - Sleepless We Lie, Thoughtless We Cry Award winner

Into The Arcane
Sleepless We Lie, Thoughtless We Cry
by Lianne Molon at 04 February 2019, 10:54 AM

Straight from the Netherlands arrives a Doom’N’ Roll, Death Metal-influenced concept album from INTO THE ARCANE, and it is appropriately titled “Sleepless We Lie, Thoughtless We Cry” - it serves as the musical backdrop for the experiments conducted by Dr. John P. Philips in the late 19th century concerning the madness and insanity of the mentally ill.

Vocalist Erik Noten has the right idea in trying to impersonate the voice of a mad man behind a rumbly, trance-induced growl. Given the nature of his vocals, one can assume that Dr. Philips was not very humane towards his patients. Musically, the album could be described as foul breathed, notoriously sombre Death Doom project along the lines of pioneering acts such as RUNEMAGIK and HOODEN MENACE. Van Riet’s guitar playing can be recognized as gloomy and dismal enough to match the angst of Noten’s vocals, and fit the rigorous yet polarizing tempos of Bouten’s percussion. Jacobs (on bass) is frequently prominent on all of the lengthy, sordid tracks, only adding to the seeping madness that is Dr. Philips and his ideologies.

“Een Leven Niet Geleefd” is the first track to introduce spoken vocals from a female patient who complains about a form of anxiety she feels. It only adds the building melancholy, leading into a husky vocal performance on “Reptilian Masquerade.” Without burrowing their sound too far into the Death Metal territory, the album maintains their mellow sanguinity driven by an equally haunting chorus. On the guitar work alone, the sound can be compared to Seraphim BLACKSOUL SERAPHIM, another Doom project implicative of similar themes such as despair and lost hope. Once in a while, the lyrics presented in this work can be distinguished from the nasty growls and overpowering instrumentals, but they do not escape the realm of fate and horror that drives the album’s concept. Lijdensdruk’s introductory bassline dives straight into a monstrous growl, further moulding into a turbulent mixture of all things gothic and mournful.

“21, When I Died” brings out the band’s adventurous side, integrated with epic guitar riffs and drums echoed throughout the entirety of a chapel. From here, the story continues, and can be interpreted in multiple ways depending on how the listener intends. The last track, “My Sane Asylum” closes the album’s story ambiguously, with a jump in time of about one hundred years. Greeted with a somber acoustic chill that fades away only to return with a powerful bassline and immediate in-your-face madness of vocal depravity and shrieking guitars. It finishes almost as it began, the mystery of absurdity never coming to an end to be solved by either doctor or patient.

The well thought out merging of desolation focused Doom Rock and traces of morbid sounding Death Metal in the form of a mad man only strengthens the supposed concept of the album. The listener can get a picture of ailing life, a sense of blasphemy, and the unresolved hatred that lies within the thoughts of insane individuals. Although not much actual research was conducted on this lost experiment, “Sleepless We Lie, Thoughtless We Cry” forces the listener into a world of pain, suffering and desolation that no glimmer of hope would dare to shine upon.

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

4 Star Rating

1. Chapter 1: Dr. Philips & The Arcane Disorder
2. Chapter 2: Sleepless We Lie, Thoughtless We Cry
3. Chapter 3: My Other Self
4. Chapter 4: Een Leven Niet Geleefd
5. Chapter 5: Reptilian Masquerade
6. Chapter 6: Thoughts On Breathing
7. Chapter 7: Lijdensdruk
8. Chapter 8: 21, When I Died
9. Chapter 9: My Sane Asylum
Erik Noten - Vocals
Jeroen Van Riet - Guitars
Harald Bouten - Drums
Tijl Jacobs - Bass
Record Label: Independent


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Edited 22 August 2019

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