Tuesday, September 1, 2015

REVIEW - TOVARISH - THIS TERRIBLE BURDEN - CD

TOVARISH - THIS TERRIBLE BURDEN - CD
ARGONAUTA RECORDS/REX24
BLACKENED NOISE/DEATH INDUSTRIAL/DRONE DOOM
COMES IN A FOUR PANEL DIGIPACK.
TOVARISH ARE:
DIMITRI MYSHKIN - VOCALS
IVAN REYSKALNIKOV - ELECTRONICS/DRUMS
ROMAN VOLKOV - GUITARS



I.) SOYUZ:
This first track is an extended intro piece that slowly starts with the sounds
of someone rummaging through scrap metal and wreckage.Stirring ambience rises,
Created by a mass of woeful voices.Church bells ring in a vain attempt to call
down hope from the heavens as a lone drifter continues to search through the
metallic waste.I envision a Post-Apocalyptic filled with mountains of debris
and garbage against the backdrop of a red-orange sky.Most are dead and the rest
are dying.Rhythms are formed by what sounds like massive stones being rolled 
back as if opening the doorway to a giant crypt.Brittle music boxes spill out
their last melodies as the backing ambient work reaches a type of fragile 
beauty that can only come with loss.We then travel over the mountains of
human failure into "A Land Of Coffins."

II.) A LAND OF COFFINS:
Track two begins with a spoken word intro addressing the current state of
church and state in America and then hits HARD. Rolling waves of thunder,
dissonant guitar riffs that rise like oceanic walls and blackened growls
that sound like they are being bellowed out of the charred volcanic throat
of some ashen monstrocity.This is dark stuff.Death Doom style drums pound
at an extremely slow, yet heavy tempo.Feedback rings and hovers like a
pestilence that dwells within the track.Everything pauses at moments to
allow the vocals room to breath, and when they do, they release a toxic
smog-like substance like a cloud of dust and rot pouring out of an ancient
mass grave.Similarities can be drawn to WELTER IN THY BLOOD, DEATHSTENCH and
other related projects as well as ADERLATING or GNAW THEIR TONGUES.Seriously
grim stuff.

III.) THRONE OF BAYONETS:
Spoken samples address political concerns with grim clarity.Death industrial
drums throb in slow motion as wretched vocals come as black clouds of death,
choking the breath right out of your lungs.Electronic humming paves the way
for dark and brooding synths that form a cinematic backdrop to the spilling
terror.Clean guitar passages are woven in to add melodic notions of grief 
and sadness.The march of combat boots on their way to war is heard in the
distance and all grows silent.

IV.) ORDER 227:
Similar samples to what we heard in the previous track introduce this one
and then we are off to battle.Militant marching drums are played by inhuman
sentinals with no conscience, only a sense of duty.Wailing guitar leads scream
skyward as corroded riffs lurk below.Heavy bass thuds and rumblings add meat to
the bones of this war machine as the figurehead growls and grunts commands to
fight and annihilate.Once again all is silent as the feared and respected leader
speaks (Or screams rather) until those awesome leads return and usher in the rest
of the band.Spoken war-time samples are heard but not distinguished.Traces of melody
drift and dissapear but never add any "hopeful" tones or nuances.We end in samples,
feedback and flames.

V.) WHISPER CMPAIGN:
(Featuring Yoshiko Ohara of Bloody Panda)
Yoshiko Ohara's haunting, yet beautiful vocals open track five.A stunning piece as
a whole and an excellent addition to the album as a whole.Dreary ambiance and slow
tribal percussion's fill the empty spaces.Death rattles in the form of thick bass
string vibrations rumble beneath Ohara's soaring vocals.Her voice is clean yet
tremendous sort of like DIAMANDA GALAS.As far as the music and composition,
similarities can be drawn to artists like KAYO DOT (Though MUCH darker here),
AETHENOR, WOLVSERPENT, AELTER, and the like.The piece lingers but never really
reaches a climax in the way many Drone Doom styled tracks often do but that is
not necessarily a bad thing here.Ohara's raspy screams at the end bring the
track to an excellent close however.

VI.) CALL OF THE KURSK:
War-time speeches and Death Industrial soundscapes quickly become monolithic
riff that fall with tidal force.Mid-paced drums take us into a total Doom Metal
style groove and lock in for a while as incredibly deep growls and raspy highs
instill terror on anyone walking in my neighborhood.Death Drone in the tradition
of KHANATE or MOSS. A brief interlude is played by a moody pianist.Gloomy tones
that are backed by the addition of spoken samples and then we are locked into
annihilation and blood boiling madness once again.The multi-layered vocal treatments
are fucking awesome here and remind me of DRAGGED INTO SUNLIGHT at times.By far one
of the heaviest and most punishing albums I've heard this year.

VII.) URSA MAJOR:
This one starts with the cold ambiance of synth choirs and other resonating tones.
Lead guitars wail over deep, yawning expanses of quaking sub-bass that create deep
pits that will engulf you whole.Ghostly piano melodies play out over object noise.
An instrumental interlude to give you a few moments before the destructive force
of the previous tracks returns in well-rested might.An interesting and captivating
ambient track nonetheless.

VIII.) DYATLOV PASS:
Crashing of war and riot in the streets.Echoing bass rhythms, frantic dialog and
DEEP vocal grunts.This is terror in audio form.Much of this album is immensly heavy
and this track is no exception.Once the drums and main riffs kick in it's like a sledge
hammer (Or should we say "Sludge Hammer?") To the to the chest and a steel toe boot firmly
planted in your face.My only complaint here is that this one seems to go by too fast but
repeated listens will do just fine.

IX.) DECLINE IN EMPATHY:
Following the now established TOVARISH mode of slaughter, we once again open with a brief
sample followed by huge decaying riffs and sub-bass undercurrents and those fucking vocals.
Obviously pitch-shifted far down at times until they sound more beast than human but fucking
awesome either way.Higher rasps pour out like a poisoness gas and fill the air with a suffocating
white noise hiss.Everything suddenly fades into rhythmic noise and crisp sheets of static filled
with spoken dialog in a foreign tongue.These last few tracks have been a little shorter in length
but still filled with everything they've needed.

X.) RADIATION SICKNESS:
The final track comes as LOUD rhythmic noise and churning, destructive patterns.The "percussion's"
or pulse of the track is made of what sounds like giant concrete slabs being dropped to the ground
below from a high distance in a looped rhythm.Claustrophobic atmospheres are achieved through 
disorienting tones and textures and ascending/descending synth ambiance mixed into harsh bursts
of static noise.Though TOVARISH haven't reinvented the wheel, they have sucsessfully blended
each essential element to create an excellent mix of Drone Doom, Death Industrial, Harsh Noise,
and Dark Ambient with traces of Black Metal, Sludge and Power Electronics.

A SOLID ALBUM FROM START TO FINISH:

8/10
-ABATTOIR-

WWW.ARGONAUTRECORDS.COM
https://www.facebook.com/Tovarishband

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