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Pantheist : Journey Through Lands Unknown

Pantheist is not your typical doom/death metal band next door and anyone seriously into doom metal is certainly already aware of this band’s music. The brave ones who have taken the deeper step and closely followed the band’s releases, have surely realized that this band has not only evolved musically in a deeply serious way from album to album but they have also created their own special way of songwriting, turning their music into a deep, unique and darkly attractive means of musical expression.

Their latest release is the top of Pantheist's cold mountain of doom. Having been into their stuff since the early demo days, I can assure you that this is the band's most complete release to date. All of the characteristic musical elements that make Pantheist's music special, even those that have been around since the '1000 Years' demo, keep getting bigger and better and have peaked on 'Journey Through Lands Unknown'.

I do not know if the term funeral doom is adequate enough to describe this unique piece of musical art. While the songs on 'Journey Through Lands Unknown' are still rooted in funeral doom, the music also casts the listener under the spell of something much more esoteric, atmospheric, deep and mysterious, venturing far outside the confines of the typical funeral doom structure.

Solid tombstone riffing is reinforced by ambient, apocalyptic keyboard themes while the band's slow as death rhythm section builds a black stone wall. These elements are a solid basis for the music but heaviness is not the main focus of this record. Ambience forms a strangely loving bond with heaviness, giving birth to this pantheon of music. The guitars bring strange expanding melodies to the listener that are darkly beautiful and lightly progressive. The songs are also blessed by the velvet touch of Pink Floyd, an aspect of the music that remains hidden underneath and is up to the listener to discover.

For those of you searching for standard funeral doom you will obviously be satisfied with this record, but if you're looking for more adventurous listening, guided by eternal darkness, this record is especially for you. In a way, the title of the album reflects the music hidden within. As one delves more deeply into the music, one shares the feeling of a lonesome human image found in a desert, an unknown land just like the Greek lyrics describe in the beginning of the track 'Unknown Land'. You will surely find your way through the mysterious melodies that haunt this record, melodies that become darkly exotic. 'Unknown Land' is a good example of these exotic melodies, as it carries a special touch of eastern/Greek influence. 'Dum Spiro Despero' will remind you of the older Pantheist days because it is heavier and more solid. 'Eternal Sorrow' can surely be mentioned as a new Pantheist hymn while 'Mourning The Passing Of Certainty (Despair As The Sky Turns Grey)' is the ideal epilogue to this musical drama.

'Journey Through Lands Unknown' is a magnificent album and I would expect nothing less from a band who have studied, so deeply, the dark art dark of funeral doom. When a band uses their genius to cover a song like 'For Funeral To Come' by Katatonia (from their previous EP) and manages to convert it into a smart, still dark anthem, you know their own material will be something very special and is just the case with Pantheist.

For me, 'Journey Through Lands Unknown' is already good company for this cold winter...for you?

Reviewer's rating: Unrated


Tracklist :
1. Deliverance
2. Unknown Land
3. Dum Spiro Despero
4. Haven
5. Oblivion
6. The Loss Of Innocence
7. Eternal Sorrow
8. Mourning The Passing Of Certainty (Despair As The Sky Turns Grey)

Duration : Approx. 63 minutes.

Visit the Pantheist bandpage.

Reviewed on 06-03-2009 by Chris Papadakis
No God Only Pain
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