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Profetus - As All Seasons Die Award winner

As All Seasons Die
by Daniel Fox at 16 September 2014, 7:17 PM

Over the years I've heard many a Doom act emerge from Finland, floating above the fissures of musical obscurity, many of which signed to Svart Records; a label to which a Doom fanatic should look no further. Alas, Funeral Doom masters PROFETUS have returned with a 4-track album pushing 36 minutes. Quite frankly, I've never heard anything like it. We may be familiar with the downtuned, slow, fuzzy chugs of the likes of DOPETHRONE, but nothing could prepare me and, I doubt, anyone else, for what is to follow.

"The Rebirth of Sorrow"; how fitting. This track begins the album with what Doom metal considers nearly 4 minutes, an introduction; it is quite possible one of the bleakest, most hauntingly beautiful, graceful passages I've ever heard. 3 minutes and 41 seconds of mournful, emotive organ-playing, and smatterings of shimmering, acoustic noodling, hypnotizing stanzas of spoken-word voiced over. This track doesn't just set the scene; it builds an atmosphere of darkness and sonic wonderlust and doesn't let you leave. "A Reverie (Midsummer's Dying)" is the sound of your feet hitting the semi-tangible abyss once drawn in, numbing paralysis setting in, limb by limb. The organ is kept for funerial ambience, to astounding effect; the riffs are, in essence, what one might expect, but cut through with a surprising clarity. Keeping in mind, however, Doom is not to be listened to for appreciation of technical precision. Every solemn chord struck is a brush stroke and a breath gasped.

"Dead Are Our Leaves of Autumn" cuts in with an emotionally disturbing, different shade of black; the album already feeling like a single, 36-minute song, this track a heavier, metallized version of the intro piece. The vocals return to bleak, evocative spoken-word from the drawn-out, gut-wrenching growls from previously. The riffs explode in grandeur, with a suitable dose of epic, if epic can be used to describe such a solemn musical experience. Wailing, emotive guitar leads are threaded through the darkness in streaks of majestic silver; perhaps the greatest musical moment found on the album. "The Dire Womb of Winter", technically closing the album, but comprises nearly half of it. A continuation of the thematic stylings of "A Reverie…", in a way, it feels slower, heavier, deadlier, more robust, yet… Unexplicably empty. Emptiness that masks substance that masks emptiness; I don't know how the band does it. The track eventually picks up in pace slightly, perhaps signalling the end, as souls embark on the final journey; life is dead, and death is here, the riffs, the organ, the percussion, the vocals holding our hand.

The end of the album projected waves of feelings, reverberating long after the final, crushing riff. Not many bands I can thing of manage to project that; project their music onto our consciousness. I don't care how pretentious this sounds; this album is a must-buy, and even if you are not a fan of doom, check it out; your will change your mind.

5 Star Rating

1. The Rebirth of Sorrow
2. A Reverie (Midsummer's Dying)
3. Dead Are Our Leaves of Autumn
4. The Dire Womb of Winter
A. Mäkinen - Guitar, lead vocal
M. Mäkelä - Guitar, backing Vocals
E. Kuismin - Guitar
M. Nieminen - Organ
V. Kujansuu - Drums
Record Label: Svart Records


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Edited 19 August 2022

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