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The Vision Bleak – Set Sail To Mystery

The Vision Bleak
Set Sail To Mystery
by Maria Voutiriadou at 20 March 2010, 6:03 PM

Rambling from the absolute darkness of “Elisabeth Dane” and the deep introversion of “Carpathia”, till the lusty needs of “She-Wolf” and the ancient mysticism of “The Black Pharaoh”, it’s about time for another one obscure staging through the pale world of THE VISION BLEAK, 3 years after the excellence of “The Wolves Go Hunt Their Prey” album, back in 2007. The recipe has been checked and so its success; the duo horror project strikes back with the fourth album, “Set Sail To Mystery”,which is more ‘Metal’ than ever. This time, Schwadorf and Konstanz grab us from the throat and throw deep into the next sailing and the sequence remains the same: mystery, darkness, horror, Quietus. So, the attitude seems to stand still;what about the music part?


The décor has been set for this horror cruise, from the opening “A Curse Of The Grandest Kind” (an incantation from Lord Byron’s classic drama “Manfred”) with the most appropriate way: haunting strings open up the heavy curtain of the latest act and a low-pitched voice recites few lines, constituting to the darkness of the whole atmosphere. Then, “Descend Into Maelstrom” takes the reins and the catchy and boisterous riff indicates that a metallic thunder approaches dangerously; the definition of stateliness, the climax of the silence drama. But not for very long: the Doom appetite in the following “I Dined With The Swans” establishes a brand new element for THE VISION BLEAK; a romantic overture, a desperate interlude full of ringing bells and creepy theatrical timbres, reminding a little of the “Nightmare Before Christmas” story. It’s one of those times where words are not enough to describe the feelings of the artist / maker; they just bow down in front of it and bless life!


What about “A Romance With The Grave”? It’s not about a mushy love song; on the contrary, it’s full of aggressiveness and hooky riffs that increase step by step till the sticking refrain that still haunts my nightmares. The reading of Konstanz (having growling moments here and there) is brilliant, especially in the ‘Death’ part. So, now, are you in mood for a H. P. Lovecraft fairytale? Ready or not, “The Outsider” is waiting patiently for its turn and comprises the absolute hymn of abnormal and sensitivity at the same time (although it is the most ‘commercial’ track of the album), since the Highness of “Mother Nothingness” is near. The most low tempo composition of “Set Sail To Mystery” stands rigid and severe, trying to experiment with the condemned paths of leviathans like SOLITUDE AETURNUS and CANDLEMASS, with oriental tunes and the heavy low riffs. Also, note that the operatic male vocals at the end of the 8-minute song belong to Thomas Helm of EMPYRIUM.


But the sailing will not end so simple and tragic; one track before the forthcoming end, “The Foul Within” creates the appropriate atmosphere to shut any eyelid. At last, the mystery itself gains flesh and bones through the dark clean vocals and the monstrous keyboards that their immediacy sups every tortured soul that has not made a stop at Purgatory yet. Thank Dorian Gray, the apotheosis of epos has come with the inspiring “He Who Paints The Black Of Night” and the METALLICA-esque guitar attitude puts a glorious end in the story of Oscar Wilde; the ideal closing, reminding us that the night is pitch-black, no matter what. Now, it’s obvious that the completion is here and you can give up peacefully and leave yourselves to the alabaster technique of THE VISION BLEAK to create the most nightmarish fairytales.


Elisabeth Dane is far away centuries ago and Dorian is knocking at your inner door the last six minutes; really, do you have the strength to open up and face your worst self? If you dare, you’ll be awarded; “Set Sail To Mystery” is going to take care of it. All aboard!

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
  1. A Curse Of The Grandest Kind
  2. Descend Into Maelstrom
  3. I Dined With The Swans
  4. A Romance With The Grave
  5. The Outsider
  6. Mother Nothingness (The Triumph Of Ubbo Sathla)
  7. The Foul Within
  8. He Who Paints The Black Of Night
Lineup:
Ulf Theodor Schwadorf (Markus Stock) – Vocals, Guitars, Bass, Keyboards
Allen B. Konstanz (Tobias Schönemann) – Vocals, Drums, Keyboards
Record Label: Prophecy Productions
     


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Edited 08 August 2022
 

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