CDR: Beyond [2004]


Bloated tumescent zepplins sheathed in flayed human skin scour the skies, patrolling and by sheer presence controlling. Slivers of synthesised violin pierce the occluded skies, absorbed by the epidermal monstrosities; ‘Torn’ is a lazy drift, disassociate as it is far from the earth. Beyond undulates the intent for the entire album – project even – as one of drift, drone and expanse, the horizon almost as illimitable as the ephemeral reverb. ‘Within’ picks up with broad strokes tingled with the first note of disharmony, subtle tintinnabulation punctures oceans of drone so tumid your ears feel as if to drown or implode. Symphony gutters hell’s demesne, sneering minor cadences at the fringes of the swollen air. Just what is this malignant sentience inside? A cymbal rung three times initiates ‘Canyon’, replete with drones, yet here they are far less linear, snaking and curving, intertwining each other while the hiss of cymbals crowns the dirge. Pulsing dark undercurrents bed an environment of rapidly shifting memories and thoughts, the ‘Void’ is anything but empty, as Beyond offers its most animated track of the album. Snatches of choir chime in the distance and hulking drones bellow to change the path of the listener into the darker realms of the track. The last track, ‘Ancient’, resumes the drawn-out journey, misting the ambience with barely audible bells and chimes, yet near the end is an unexpected, and given the tenor of the album is somewhat, brutal climax.

An album for a lazy rest or relaxed substance-induced torpor, Beyond would not offend despite its bleak moments, the motions are slow and the melody simple, perfect for headphones (as is recommended inside the case).

Released in a DVD case with wraparound black and white artwork of microscopic cell-like structures the package includes a printed card with track-listing and CDR with printed label. Minimal design and information.



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Beyond [Houkai]