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Longa Morte : Zvezdopad

Simple but huge: Belarusian solo project Longa Morte offer an atmospheric and individual Funeral Doom journey with this latest full-length.

Longa Morte (which roughly translates into 'Long Death' is a one man band from Belarus that has been steadily putting albums out since 2013. If this album is any indication of his past works then this is a band to watch as he clearly has his things in order. Obviously there are a few Funeral Doom points of reference, with Mistress of the Dead and Worship being the biggest and most noticeable. These aren't even direct soundalikes either, just vague points of reference. There are also a lot of non-funeral elements in this album that are blended seamlessly into the bands style. I hear Necare - 'Ruin' era and some mid-period Agalloch in the atmosphere, phrasing and lead work. I hear a lot of Thergothon in the band's sound too. The ponderous nature of the song structures, the sad but curious way the notes are played kept me enthralled during my first listen. There were several moments that reminded me of other bands while listening to this. Not in a ripoff sort of way, but very much in the 'you have excellent heroes' kind of way.

What I can't get over is how simple the music is and yet how huge it is. The melancholic aspects are more than the focal point but tastefully so. It's so slow and so heavy but the lead work is so good despite being minimalist. There's a lot to be said for how much is spoken but more so for what is unsaid with the music. Understatement is the word on this album. My biggest issue is the production. The bass drowns out the rhythm guitar, but since they're both playing the same thing it doesn't detract very much from the songs. The clean guitar leads over the distorted rhythms are something that seem to stand out. The album's tempo is fairly consistent with a few faster chugging bits thrown in for good measure. There's no double bass and I oddly like it. The vocals are of the growled variety and underneath the music again making it more of the focus. Aside from the various tropes of the style, the shortest song is 9:14 with the rest being at or near the ten minute mark.

Every listen to this album brought me closer and closer to something bigger than myself. Each time I was taken on an inward journey and I loved every second of this dirge heavy beast. This album is really fantastic. I wasn't sure what to think after researching this band as all of their releases, save for this one, are digital. I want them all on CD, damn it! The more I listen to it the better it gets. That doesn't happen too often for me unless the album in question is just that good. The atmosphere, the mood and overall beauty of this CD left me wanting more. I don't know what vocalist Viktor Set'ko's saying as I don't speak the language but I love it.

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Reviewer's rating: 9/10


Tracklist :
1. Декабрь
2. Осталось только
4. Не просыпаться
5. Звездопад

Duration : Approx. 53 minutes

Visit the Longa Morte bandpage.

Reviewed on 2019-03-10 by Doom_Guy
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