White Tomb

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Band Name Altar Of Plagues
Album Name White Tomb
Type Album
Erscheinungsdatum 17 April 2009
Produced by James O'Ceallaigh
Musik GenreBlack Metal
Mitglieder die dieses Album besitzen33


1. Earth: As a Womb 12:03
2. Earth: As a Furnace 15:00
3. Through the Collapse: Watchers Restained 09:48
4. Through the Collapse: Gentian Truth 13:10
Total playing time 50:01

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Review @ Satanicarchangel

12 Juni 2013

A lament to humanities destruction, the perfect soundtrack to the post apocalypse

Altar of Plague’s White Tomb is an exercise in droning and dissonant Black Metal that succeeds in conveying a decaying urban vibe throughout its duration. If you are a fan of moody and atmospheric Black Metal then you are unlikely to be disappointed.

White Tomb is a monolithic opus; with four lengthy tracks clocking in at 50 minutes it is definitely an album that demands a certain degree of patience and perseverance. The sound of White Tomb is more or less straightforward Atmospheric Black Metal with a degree of post rock influences such as the focus on the climax and the smooth transitions between the harsher and softer sections. Of course one will instantly cite Wolves in the Throne Room as an influence upon them although I think it would be unfair to compare them to anything more than a similarity of style. Altar of Plagues do definitely share certain stylistic characteristics with the aforementioned band however the sound of Altar of Plagues is far more apocalyptic and destructive. White Tomb serves as a lament to humanities inevitable destruction in the face of a collapsing ecosystem.

The four tracks here succeed in creating an authentic and desolate atmosphere, despite their lengths nothing on White Tomb ever feels stretched out and overblown, everything fits perfectly together and the long track lengths no doubt help in crafting the atmosphere on display here. The guitar work is immaculate throughout, taking a droning variety on the standard Black Metal trope and mixing some more melodic sections in, the guitar work may not be overly complex but it needn’t be, for what they are they are nothing short of excellent. The distortion is sublime being really gritty and abrasive and adding more to the apocalyptic atmosphere. The guitars are constantly shifting like the oceans tide drawing comparisons to bands of the Atmospheric Sludge variety such as Isis and Neurosis. The way in which White Tomb is structured in particular draws the most comparison to these bands, the post rock inspired climaxes are here and the way in which everything flows has a definite Post Metal vibe to it.

Black Metal to me is structured similar to ambient music by the way in which much of conventional song writing is discarded in favour of an attempt to build atmosphere and often to create a sense of darkness and dread. White Tomb allows oneself to be suffused in a dark and oppressive atmosphere of intense Black Metal. This isn’t just one chord repeated in your face for the whole length, instead the whole thing moves like the oceans tide constantly shifting and morphing when needs be. Altar of Plagues knows quite well the basis of ambient music and has created a very compelling and destructive piece of art with White Tomb. It seems futile to describe in detail every brilliant aspect to White Tomb because it’s just so dense and varied that every listener will have their own personal highlights. For me the highlight is undoubtedly the incredible atmosphere, being one of the most devastatingly bleak and desolate atmospheres I’ve ever heard, because of the atmosphere White Tomb comes off as a soundtrack to the post apocalypse. There’s an overbearing sense of decay and ruin within White Tomb that ensures that it goes down as one of the most harrowing musical experiences of all time.

White Tomb is about as cold and as cruel as Black Metal can possibly get, the music is raw, harrowing and brooding with absolutely no leanings towards the mainstream. White Tomb takes elements from Post Rock, Drone, Ambient and even Atmospheric Sludge Metal and mixes it in with the Black Metal template to create an utterly harrowing and bleak soundtrack to the apocalypse. The long song lengths may be a turn off for some but for those who are well accustomed to music of this calibre then White Tomb is a lonely trip into the post apocalypse well worth taking.

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