DYSTOPIA – De Verboden Diepte I: Veldslag op de Rand van de Wereld

DYSTOPIA – De Verboden Diepte I: Veldslag op de Rand van de Wereld

BAND URL: https://lnk.to/deverbodendiepte1

Dystopia’s take on ferocious and earth-shattering black metal is quite unlike anything else that I have come across. In fact, lumping the band and album into the black metal category is doing them a disservice as they clearly exist beyond the confines of said genre and have more in common with what is often referred to as post-black metal. This is just a backhanded way of saying that De Verboden Diepte I: Veldslag op de Rand van de Wereld is damn-near impossible to classify, but one thing is certain; this blistering and richly textured opus is a hefty and inspired work that conjures up a brooding and perfectly impenetrable wall of sound that is so compelling and forceful that it fucking hurts.

De Verboden Diepte I is not for the more sensitive listeners out there, and it comes across as absolutely uncompromising but also utterly mesmerizing. Some particularly dazzling moments occur in the shape of ‘Eerste Enkelen, Toen Honderden, Toe Duizenden’ and ‘Giftige Woorden’, and the record is very much the result of dark cinematic atmospherics colliding with vicious and bleak black metal. The two other lengthy gems that are ‘Dood van de Wachters’ and ‘De Val’ (the opening and closing tracks respectively) leave me feeling that my adrenaline levels are all maxed out thanks to some huge, stirring riffs that evoke images of a collapsing black hole and dying societies. Underneath the razor-edged surface of it all you will find song material suffused with melancholy and a prominent sense of reflection, which reminds me slightly of the masterful Mother Culture by the Norwegian post-black metal outfit Avast, and the vocals courtesy of Dennis Onsia are as intense as they are expressive. Utilizing somewhat unusual instrumentation (bukkehorn, flugelhorn, trumpet, and trombone) sets the LP apart from pretty much anyone else that I can think of, and Dystopia never lose sight of the fact that melodies and dynamics are essential, which the aforementioned ‘Giftige Woorden’ beautifully illustrates.    

De Verboden Diepte I shows no water-treading tendencies at any point in time during its running time of 37 minutes and is an intoxicating experience boasted by a speaker-rattling production with a hefty sonic impact to it. If you desire austere and aggressive metal that is rich in detail and color and packed with stimulating ideas, you have come to the right place. That magnificent album artwork alone ought to pull you in. Hats off to this Dutch band for spawning such an eloquently antagonistic album.     

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