Here I review the new surprise EP from Panopticon, the folk infused, Atmospheric Black Metal legends! This release was a complete surprise, as such my review is slightly late. But I had to write up this release.
- The Crescendo Of Dusk opens with grisly riffs, a dark atmospheric feel to them but with the primal edge of early Black Metal. The full mix drop us into huge waves of cacophonous layer of gorgeous melodic riffing, tremolo picked with total ferocity and met with killer blast beats. The sheer batter of the track is immediately impressive with a mixture of anger and tranquility to be found within the soundscapes created. The gloriously soaring atmospherics are just damn gorgeous, with interspersed slower tempos to allow the momentum to rebuild, switching from blistering attack to catchy grooves. The instrumental bravado is absolutely fantastic, the lead work is glacially dissonant yet melodic. A totally brilliant return after almost no time since the last double full length. The track features some tasteful ambience and clean guitars which truly allow the monstrous piece of beautiful music to regrow its forceful bite. A truly wonderful piece of atmospheric and rich Black Metal that is captivating throughout, using insanely good songwriting skills. The piece was both maddeningly uplifting and crushingly dark with perfect execution, raw but concise production and consistently progressing instrumentals with fantastic vocals and even some cleans added to the varied mix.
- The Labyrinth takes us in with sampling, adding to the already wide array of stunning atmospheres. Acoustic guitars soon join with a gorgeous bit of riffing, slide guitar and spoken word, adding the folk/country element to the EP. The coupling of this with an atmosphere fuelled Black Metal track is an interesting and bolt move, something Panopticon has never feared and that has always paid off, this being no exception. A really cool piece of music, adding diverse influence to the mystique of Extreme Metal. Gorgeously done with plenty of dark twists but empowering and light-hearted sections to contrast. Another intense track for sure, but in a completely different way to the first. The two songs work fantastically together, with their differences giving each other strength rather than weakness.
This is something incredibly beautiful, ferocious and diverse. The huge array of soundscapes and gorgeous songwriting creates an immersive experience mixing Black Metal and Folk music in a unique and brilliant manner, something Panopticon are known very well for. -9/10