A split CDR release by the relatively unknown UK-based label, Blackthrone Productions, this is an interesting release. We have two bands: Arkadia, hailing from Canada, and Nigrescent, who are from the U.K. Rather than put all of one band's tracks on the first half and the other band's tracks on the second, the two groups songs are alternated, which kind of annoys me as it destroys any kind of continuity. That gripe aside, we have some quality material here.
Arkadia are the better band. They create Burzum-inspired, mid-paced black metal full of atmosphere, depression and utter hatred, and with some excellent dark ambient passages. All the tracks are pretty long songs too, giving that excellent contemplative and torturous feeling- just listen to Sol's vocals - complete hate and misery and scorn for humanity.
Nigrescent are suitably raw - noticeably rawer than Arkadia - and more aggressive, with faster, shorter songs, but I find the riffs somewhat boring and way too simplistic. The vocals are competent, though, and overall there's nothing much to complain about.
If you were a fan of earlier Burzum material, I urge you to get this release just for Arkadia, who along with the excellent and sadly defunct Weakling, and more recently German one man project Wigrid, recreate that Burzum vision, torturous and depressive.
All related articles (interviews, live, from the vault)