Split EPs are a tricky thing to pull off. You need the right two bands, you need to put up just a handful of songs to represent your sound, and then you need to make sure all those pieces work together. By that definition, Monolith Levitation and Dekonstruktor have really pulled off an impressive little EP here.
Starting things off we have Monolith Levitation. If you’re a fan of SWANS, you’ll have a good time with this one. Grooves are very heavy in a tribal sort of way, both tracks are very trance like, with a really deep droning vocal line that can shift pretty impressively to a primal cry with ease. Opening track, Opium Ceremony, while a perfectly respectable almost six minutes, seemed like its length betrayed the thesis of the band’s sound. The second track’s thirteen plus minutes seemed to fit more into the tranced out tribal ceremony vibes to me, making Despair my pick for Monolith Levitation‘s half of the EP.
Dekonstruktor come at us with a very similar sound with some subtle but distinctive differences. We have a much more psychedelic rock vibe coming from these guys. Opener, Beheaded Horizon, is chock full of choppy phases out riffing and a more distinct groove than the solemn dirge of the EPs first half. Heavily effected, mournful vocals lend to this same psych rock vibe. Dekonstruktor‘s second piece of the pie is Magma Pulse, which brings the EP back to a dirge like sound, albeit one very much fitting with this band’s style.
Upon first listen, I thought these bands were a little too similar for my taste. It took me several listen throughs to really appreciate the differences that were being presented. In the case of this specific split, I think the similarities between these bands is a big positive. While I usually prefer a little more variety, these guys just plain work together. Like two halves of the same coin, this EP showcases a like mindset with two different paths taken to the same conclusion. Like two story tellers spinning the same tale.
I would recommend this to fans of the more droning sounds of doom metal. The tribal beats and funerary dirges blend well with heavily effected guitars and interesting vocal approaches from both acts. These guys are doing some interesting things, and I think they are groups to keep an eye on in the future.
Release date: August 3rd, 2020
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