Xasthur – All Reflections Drained
Instrumental Ambient Black Metal is not a term you hear often. In fact, most black metal purest would argue that there is no such thing as instrumental or ambient black metal because the streaking vocals are an integral element of the music. But to others it’s the dark and harsh atmosphere created by the music itself that is black metal. Personally, I don’t care what you call it, good music is simply good music.
Xastur’s latest release is good music. It’s dark, it’s harsh and it’s lo-fi, everything that makes black metal, with the exception of the vocals. The music features down tempo drum work, heavy distorted guitars and ominous keyboard work. The rare vocals, which are often almost spoken word styled or simply moans, are used as an instrument, complementing and contrasting with the music. All Reflections Drained is basically the soundtrack to a nightmare, frightening and full of despair.