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aethenor - Deep In Ocean Sunk The Lamp Of Light
Earlier this year we all fell in love with the absolutely killer (but sadly ridiculously limited) 'Twisted Stems' 7" from moody Londoners Guapo, and now we have the perfect accompaniment. Aethenor is the project of Daniel O'Sullivan (of Guapo), the prolific and omnipresent Stephen O'Malley (Sunn o))), Khanate, KTL) and Vincent De Roguin and between them they have managed to lay down some of the most earth shatteringly atmospheric and cinematic soundscapes this side of Earth's incredible 'Hex' album. The reason we all got so misty-eyed over 'Twisted Stems' was its reliance on that Badalamenti sound we all know and love, but this album takes that sound one step further in a soup of Rhodes and clattering celluloid sounds, transporting the listener into darkened alcohol drenched saloons and cold, lonely desert landscapes effortlessly. Although doom-metal's grand magus Stephen O'Malley is hard at work here again, don't be expecting a treatise in drone - Aethenor have come up with something far more atmospheric and far less genre specific than you ever would have thought. The droning guitar is submerged somewhere in the mix below thick electric piano and decomposing field recordings, between clattering pots and pans and the sound of creaking wood. You can almost hear the chattering ghosts of cowboys, whores and sheriffs in the distance somewhere, hidden under crackling vinyl and a small boy collecting glasses behind the door. This is intense and deeply visual music, bringing to mind so many images you don't even need track titles to give you any clues - in fact a visual accompaniment would do the album an injustice; it gives you everything you need simply from the sound. Those of you left gasping for more after Deaf Center's 'Pale Ravine' and Svarte Greiner's 'Knive' should look no further - this is how it is done, and it doesn't really get much better than this.