As_light_dies The_laniakea_architecture_vol_ii

As Light Dies - The Laniakea Architecture vol. Ii


As Light Dies from Madrid, Spain, is one of these bands which make me wonder whether Post-Black Metal is not just a jambalaya term for so many different genres that enumerating them simply makes no sense. Okay, let’s try: Gothic Doom Folklorist Alternative Black Metal. See, rather stick to the former even it is not-descriptive and might include anything.

Let’s try something different this time and have a look at the different elements listed above.

Black Metal? Easy and clear yes, because it is the basis for everything that As Light Dies does. The first rumbling blast beat attack of the opener ”Falling Apart” takes no hostages but is set to groove and bring out your inner demons so that they will be killed at sunrise.

Alternative? There are several passages throughout the record which are highly accessible, for example the near Post-Rock’ish intro to the final track ”To Finish”, however one should not regard this project as one that strives for the charts. The crunchy riffs and the melancholic piano parts of that last track might make you think differently, but do not think they set out to run up the charts, this is not Nightwish.

Folklore? On this record about the magnitude of the universe and the Laniakea supercluster that comprises roughly 100,000 galaxies including our Milky Way there are two interludes (”Épocas Venideras” & “Esus Agápē”) that are both based on acoustic guitar parts that breathe a lot of atmosphere, especially the latter one which sounds like an echo from medieval times past with an instrumentation of whistle, string and guitar. A lamentation of things lost and gone forever? Who knows, where in the universe our sounds might find an echo, but to me it is like a little nod to Funereal Presence which might be the best band to ever incorporate Medieval themes and sounds into a Black Metal record like Achatius.

Doom? If you remember the magnitude of The Gathering stemming from Anneke van Giersbergen’s voice, you will feel at home here easily. Just listen to the vocal parts by Cristina R. Galvan and Sofia M.R. - especially the last track – and you know what I mean. The female vocals give just so much more to this record, because they are being given space to radiate their brightness. They stand out and shine like some stars in the Laniakea structure.

Gothic? Come on, as soon as a record has some well-contemplated string sections which are not only there in order to support but which have their own position in the soundscape then Gothic comes to mind. On The Laniakea Architecture vol. II this can be heard at the beginning of ”The Green” where the strings substitute the guitar in certain parts, not remaining in the background but stepping up front. When we then add some chants (as in the same track), then it becomes clear that the people behind As Light Dies also have listened to their share of Paradise Lost.

Nevertheless, again similar to the supercluster which transcends the size of its inherent galaxies by a vastness bigger than the sum of these parts, The Laniakea Architecture vol. II is more than the sum of its songs or genres. Because this would all not make any sense if the record didn’t have a certain flow. If it were nine tracks following each other without any link, no one would want to listen to the record, but as these elements are repeated and intertwined throughout the 46 minutes running time, this remains a record that will keep you interested and attentive. You like your Black Metal differentiated and enriched by other styles? Then this is a record just to your taste, just give it time, space and some thought!