(TheMadIsraeli reviews the new fourth album by the Russian project Talsur.)
I would guess that Funeral Doom is a hard kind of metal to write. Your songs are long, your tempos are agonizingly sluggish, you’re running the risk of using hammy black metal synths and killing the intended vibe, AND you have to write captivating melodies, all at the same time. It is a style of metal that, for me, has the smallest number of noteworthy bands, yet at the same time those bands who stand out REALLY stand out. In truly capturing the essence of sorrow, despair, and the lamentation of your own fragility and mortality, Funeral Doom offers a musical experience that truly doesn’t exist anywhere else in the pantheon of the metallic arts.
Talsur is a one-man Russian project with multiple releases to his name, boasting different stylistic inclinations on each one (the samples I checked out of his last record had a sort of industrial blackened take on a doom sound), and now finds himself doing ANOTHER new approach with Slough Of Depond.
This is one of the best doom metal records I’ve ever heard. Period. In my entire twenty-seven years of living.
It’s an even more depressive, gloomier expansion of the sound Daylight Dies and In Mourning have pioneered in the melodic death metal world, with that added weight and intensity of funeral doom. The music doesn’t drag as much as most Funeral Doom, but keeps that weighty slog going while being really active in terms of having lots and LOTS of really superb neoclassical mournful melodies.
Talsur answers the biggest problem of Funeral Doom, and doom metal in general, which is the pitfall of uninteresting repetition. By doom standards, the music is alway moving somewhere new, hitting some alteration of a key melody, always maintaining a dynamic between roaring distorted agony and some of the best clean guitar work I’ve ever heard in a while on a metal album, in the form of ungodly enrapturing dirges.
Combine this with his powerful deathly roars, haunting clean vocals, and a masterful composer’s sense of when to incorporate the synths and other elements to create the most impact, and Slough of Despond is definitely a must-listen-to record of 2017. It’s perfect.