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Ov Shadows - The Darkness Between Stars

Ov Shadows
The Darkness Between Stars
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 03 April 2018, 6:40 AM

Black Metal quartet OV SHADOWS formed in Gothenburg, Sweden in 2016. From their Facebook page, “Embrace your shadow self - your dark aspects. Don't hide away. Let those harmless creatures, turn into raging monsters. Let chaos guide your consciousness. You are OV SHADOWS. These few sentences frames the concept of OV SHADOWS - an exploration beyond the sane and mentally sound. With our music and lyrics, we acknowledge the duality that divide a persona and our shadow self. We continue further into the dark - a portal into chaos without barriers and rules. Delve into what is the true you; dare to let go. What marks the start of OV SHADOWS is also the end of Waning. A new darkness awaits.

The title track kicks off the album. There is a bit of an evil fade in leading to the chaos of the sound. It hits you square on the nose, and the blood flows. The vocals rage like a five alarm fire. When it settles a bit, the rhythms create a harrowing experience. Imagine how black deep space really is. It’s practically impossible to imagine, but this song creates a nice bridge to that image. “Bellowing Shadows” starts off slower, with a four chord riff pattern, before blast beat drumming kicks in a rolls forward like a runaway freight train. The intensity never lets up and it ends in a bang. “The Hanged Man” enters slowly but again quickly throws up that proverbial wall of sound that is common in the genre. Through some varied riffing and ambiance however, they really carve out an agonizing and tormenting sound here.

“Disguised as Altruism” features deeper vocals at times, and a grinding rhythm. There are no shadows, only the complete absence of light. Some melancholy despondence helps to push a feeling of hopelessness as well. It segues into “The Ritual of the Natural Flame,” which is seven minutes of madness where reasoning is abandoned. At times it is so intense that it seems to envelope you with its hypnotic dirge. They do pause however at times and allow the vocal screams to sear at your flesh like the scorching flames of the Underworld. “Hordes Abiding the Narrator” is a vile and heinous affair, almost more frightening in scope than any other track on the album. The chord progressions are key to this aspect being as full as it is. Of course, the vocals don’t hurt in this regard either.

“A Sky in Vain” is the nearly eight-minute closing track. Don’t wait for a respite…the beast has locked you in sight and there will be no escape from imminent torture and death. What I believe the album does best is pushing an uncompromising sound of pure Black Metal hatred, and all that is perverse about the world, echoed in seven tracks of damnation of the soul. Purists will surely find this to their liking, as I believe will fans new to the genre. There’s a lot to like here overall.

Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. The Darkness Between Stars
2. Bellowing Shadows
3. The Hanged Man
4. Disguised as Altruism
5. The Ritual of the Natural Flame
6. Hordes Abiding the Narrator
7. A Sky in Vain
RA – Bass, Vocals
JW – Drums
AF – Guitars
AA – Guitars
Record Label: Black Market Metal Label


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