21 Jul 2022 - Simon
doom metal/drone/ambient | Release date: 22 Jul 2022
Wilderness of Mirrors return with a superb sophomore album, it’s an effecting, grandiose offering which will reward you with its intelligent dynamics!
Wilderness of Mirrors is a project composed and performed by Andie Gill (guitarist in the excellent Din of Celestial Birds which is a band you should definitely check out if you don’t already know them, by the way!) This is his second full-length (and a few EP’s) and continues to expand his sonic palette to greater heights than ever before. If you’re familiar with his work, then this album comes across as more streamlined. Sure, we have a couple of songs over the 10-minute mark, but this collection seems very focused, and the album feels much more cohesive as a result.
The album is an exploration of what would happen to the earth if a super-volcano were to erupt. Needless to say, this is a dark album, but Andie is too good a musician to let you stay pinned down under the weight of the darkness, there are wonderful moments of light which shine through and do a great job of lifting that metaphorical mountain (of earth) which has piled on top of you for just long enough to appreciate the stunning surrounding before letting it collapse once again.
The album puts its best foot forward with the opener Magma Chamber. It begins with softly strummed guitars which exude menace, building momentum like the slowly advancing inevitability of magma itself. Droning feedback adds to the atmosphere and then the drums kick in, adding more layers like falling ash from the eruption. The song continues to build further before a sudden glorious clean guitar section takes over and provides one of those euphoric moments of light like crepuscular rays of sunshine.
That’s not to say the album returns a diminishing amount of quality from the first song onwards, far from it in fact. The highlights are numerous and often, the beautifully intimidating piano on Earth Sleeps – Nature Is Stirred – Eruption Begins, the towering majesty of Pyroclastic Flow with its suffocating riffs, taking you by the hand and leading you along the burning river of doom-laden twists and turns before the pressure is released in a towering explosion - a truly stunning example of song writing.
This album is not to be rushed however, the care and attention to detail that Andie has managed to instil into the runtime is hugely impressive and deserves your attention. The album is a veritable treasure trove of wonderful songwriting. If you give this album the time it needs, then you will be rewarded with a moving, suffocating and ultimately cathartic experience which you will be only too happy to return to. Highly recommended.