Saturday, January 23, 2016

REVIEW - LINGUA FUNGI - MELANKHTON - CD

LINGUA FUNGI - MELANKHTON - CD
AURAL HYPNOX
RITUAL AMBIENT/AMBIENT FOLK/ELECTRO ACOUSTIC
COMES IN PLASTIC DUST-JACKET CONTAINING AN 
INTRICATELY CUT CARDBOARD SLEEVE,
STAINED FOREST GREEN WITH GOLD ARTWORK.
CONTAINS CARDBOARD ART INSERT AND AN ADDITIONAL
4 PANEL CARDBOARD INSERT CONTAINING ART AND LINER
NOTES.




When it comes to Aural Hypnox, You can expect beautifully
packaged albums containing a myriad of haunting and emotive
sounds and themes. Often dark and ritualistic in nature. With
"Melankhton" from LINGUA FUNGI this and more are featured.

I.) WAVY GUESTS:
This album is slightly different from many from other artists
on the Aural Hypnox roster, But still very much at home here.
The first of the five tracks that make up Melankhton, "Wavy Guests," 
opens the record with a ten minute sprawl that slowly comes in with
dripping, cavernous textures and what sounds like twigs cracking and
snapping within the embers of a low, dying fire. Reversed ambient
passages create a clean current. Melodic and dreamlike. "Warm" and
"Cold" tones mingle and blend in rushing movements creating a spectral
and ghostlike feeling...As if lost spirits were dashing between the walls
of a small room...These must be the wavy guests the title describes.
Acoustic experimentation is added, which makes for a very unique listening 
experience. This eventually dies out leaving only the opening soundscape for 
some time. Bare and minimal, Raw and natural. Fragile wandering chimes, Surreal
and haunting ambiance and other otherworldly sounds form together in a 
reverberating and spectral mix of ritualistic energy. Lurking and bringing 
a curious sense of danger as well as excitement. The air is charged with
supernatural power that comes through subdued, but still flexing it's strength.
Random tapping percussive elements and the clang of stange bell-like instruments
adds to the mystery and wonder of the piece. Backmasked rhythms come and lead us
into beautifully woven acoustic guitars over tribal percussion's that have a very
cryptic and ancient feeling to them. Similar to the Gypsy music of old but with a
new age, electronic edge. Music for meditation and mantra.

II.) DEPARTURE:
Next we once again depart on a spiritual journey through the metaphysic realms of 
music with the apptly titled "Departure." Ominous tones played on deep, rich strings
take us into sub-orchestral passages crafted on windswept, hazy textures. Distant
melodies form and subside as light traces of static float like feathers on the air.
This one is much darker and contains elements of Neo-Classical and traditional Folk
music. What sounds like distant horns are heard lingering in the air like some mirror
into the past days of the ancient vikings. Following this we once again go into tribal
hand drums and soflty plucked acoustic guitars...This time with the addition of wooden
flutes and a slightly faster tempo. It sort of sounds like something you'd hear from
DEAD CAN DANCE or possibly an acoustic set from the band OM. The guitars slowly go from
a repetitive lull to silence and are replaced by strange clicking electronics wraped in
slight traces of reverb and "pinging" effects. Again reversed layers are heard, This time
sharp and glass-like. Looming atmospheres roll in like swollen clouds and hang above and
within and rising strands of ambiance reach out towards us. Things become slightly disorienting
like a stressful and anxious day dream that you can't seem to shake...Carefully walking the
border between nightmarish, wonderous and mythical. We later go into another acoustic/drum
passage with a bit of a traditional folk flavor. Rich and beautiful music that one can
imagine hearing around a camp fire in the heart of the wilderness. Natural, organic and
mystifying. True bards at work here.

III.) MELANKHTON:
Title piece "Melankhton" is a bit harsher at first. Corrosive layers of sound grind 
together like razor blades across old guitar strings as noisey textures fill the
empty spaces in the background. This has a very clinical, Death Ambient vibe to it.
Like something you would have heard on Cold Meat Industries back in the day. In the
distance strange sounds similar to nocturnal birds and chirping insects create another
world to dwell within. Trickling waters run down smooth stone walls on a secret expedition
as the intensity of the piece slowly grows. It sounds like we have stepped into a hidden,
vast sub-teranean realm that goes on endlessly into various directions of still darkness.
As we journey further we enter a minimal soundscape of natural sounds and reversed layers
that eventually become another stunning folk session. The hand drums are louder and more
upfront this time and fill the mind with visions of fire and belly dancers and twisting
snake charmers. The addition of airy flutes only enhances this. If you are into instrumental
music with more of an ancient and esoteric theme then this is highly recommended. Rattling
bones fill the air for a brief moment and then we go into gorgeous acoustic ambiance and
echoing percussive skin drums. This is definitley my favorite moment on the album. My only
complaint is that I wish LINGUA FUNGI would have expanded on this segment and let it last
a little longer.

IV.) DETACHED:
"Detached" invokes a trance-like state like the ceremonies of the ancient druids. It begins
with odd "slithering" tones that coil in cyclic motions around field recordings of some
sort of natural ambiance that is hard to describe...Sort of like the sound of fresh dirt
falling upon water and stone...What I like to refer to as "Elemental Ambient." Music that
certainly detaches you from the physical as well as the mental. All worries and cared melt
away and fall off as celestial atmospheres weave together as one. Ceremonial and beautifully
rich strings fill the room like a swelling river. Many artists describe their music as 
"transcendant" but LINGUA FUNGI embody this like no other. This sort of reminds me of some
of KAYO DOT's early work at times but not enough to make LINGUA FUNGI sound like them or
anyone else enough for it to matter. Melodic plucked acoustics and haunting strings bring
to mind certain works from ANATHEMA and ULVER. Absolutely captivating and by far another
highlight of the album. Distant but powerful drums pound and vibrate adding even more of
an epic feel to the piece until we fall into a minimal soundscape of restless water that
sounds like it is coming from within the walls of a stone structure. Resonating sub-bass
washe over everything in queasy waves and all grows dark for a time until lead and rhythm
acoustic guitars return to assure us that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. 

V.) SOMA DISSOLUTION:
Our last adventure begins as "Soma Dissolution" takes us into ceremonial drumming that
sounds like a celebration in progress in the heart of the jungle. All manner of percussive
instruments are employed to create a cinematic and thematic jam with a free-form and improvised
vibe. This fades into bizarre vibrating sounds and over-plucked and stretched strings that loop
for awhile. Next a brief acoustic ballad comes and then goes into buzzing layers that hover like 
large, blood-thirsty insects. Dreadful and confusing as LINGUA FUNGI once again go from one extreme to another. Following this ordeal we hear gasping and exhaling sounds like voices from out of nowhere. It sounds like some long forgotten sacred rite being brought back to life by a cult of devotees to the lost ways of the ancients. Brass, sub-orchestral movements carry things along and set a grim pace.  Shrieking sounds feel the air as if the sky was suddenly full of preying raptors. Crisp static creates a misty atmosphere and eventually takes over, engulfing all within it. Sounds like those of rolling glass bottles and other rustling chimes and objects explore the distance. Suddenly immense and intense tides of beautiful string ambiance appear and bathe all in their glowing and haunting melodies. Another stellar point of the album that swells with emotion and the heart. Uplifting and melancholic all at once and a great closing point for the record.

AN ABSOLUTELY STUNNING AND BREATH TAKING ALBUM. A WONDERFUL ADDITION 
TO THE AURAL HYPNOX BACK CATALOG AND A PROJECT I WILL DEFINITLY KEEP
AN EYE ON:

8/10
-ABATTOIR-

www.auralhypnox.com

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