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2. Aeons Of Enlightening Darkness
3. Black Candles And Daggars To Celebrate Eternity
4. Towards The Serpent
5. Nocturnal Drops Of Poison
One of the more amusing aspects of modern underground metal is that if one were to cherry pick tracks to play for others, one could have a good time confusing the hell out of people regarding what style a band plays. Based strictly on the "Intro" and "Outro" portions of this debut record by Vollmond, one might assume it's a Robert Rich ambient knockoff. However, the good news for metal fans is that Vollmond is in fact a doomy, gloomy, brooding depressive band who rasp and morose their way through The Crypt Under the Universe. Granted, there really is no up or down in space, so it's hard to say precisely where that crypt might be located, but that's probably not something one need be worried about while listening to this decent debut.
Vollmond's sound is somewhat reminiscient of early Aeternus, before they decided they wanted to give brutal death metal a go (and became entirely redundant). The songs are slowly paced with pensive reverb. To be accurate, their recorded sound could be better as they sound like they decided to use a concrete bridge for ambience, but it is at least better than demo quality. The songwriting (which, for this particular style to work, has to be thoroughly thought out since ten thousand other bands can do this same style) shows promise, with the songs sounding as they are occasionally heading somewhere rather than parking the car and turning on the hazard lights. The arrangements in the songs are fairly subtle, but work well enough to keep the songs interesting.
The Crypt Under The Universe is a credible debut and certainly of interest to those who enjoy depressive metal or miss that early brooding Aeternus sound (though Aeternus was considerably more deeply rumbling like a distant thunderstorm than Vollmond). I'm curious to see where this band might go next with a little bit of seasoning.
Review by John Chedsey
Review date: 07/2011