By: Espi Kvlt
Son of Seth – De Dor a Odio
Blackened Industrial Doom Metal from Copenhagen, Denmark
Released on February 11, 2022 via Trepanation Recordings
If this album had come out during the time I wrote my frightening black metal iceberg for Halloween, it would have made the list and been towards the bottom, if not on the very bottom layer. Much like the other albums I wrote about on that list, it takes you on a journey from one hellish soundscape to the next, threatening to never let you leave. Some part of you doesn’t want to, wanting to see where on earth this terrifying ride will go next, but the more paranoid part of you will want to turn this off, especially if you’re listening to it in the dark through headphones like I did.
This album opens up with a track that I will admit, confused me for a minute, sounding mostly like a noise record than any obvious black metal, industrial metal, or even doom metal. However, after I let go and stopped thinking about genre and how a record should sound, I gave in and allowed the artist to let me into their mind and see things as they did. Once I did that, the music also changed, as though they’d anticipated it. It went from harsh noise to soft stringed instrumentation with what sounded like thunderclaps behind it. Okay, now I was invested. And as soon as I settled in, closed my eyes, and felt the weight of the darkness around me, those fucking fantastic vocals penetrated my ears. Reverberating all the way down to my soul, these are the kinds of vocals I’ll be thinking about and trying to imitate for years to come. They don’t sound human or like any kind of animal I could name, but instead sound like an alien reaching down to me from the heavens and pulling me up with them into an infinite darkness. The fact that only one song had concluded was frankly astounding, considering all the places we’d gone. I had no idea how it could possibly escalate from there.
And then track two opened with an orchestraic instrumentation layered atop what sounded like operatic singing. This music lures you briefly into a false sense of security. The calmness and lovely singing wrap around you like a security blanket, letting you know the alien is gone now, and it’s going to be okay. And then you are suddenly greeted by an entirely different harsh vocal style that just sounds like someone screaming in anger at you. Apparently, I’ve pissed the alien from the first track off, but I’m not sure what I did. And just as quickly as it arrives, it disappears again, replaced instead by the gentle sounds from the beginning of the track. Except they no longer sound like security and instead sound ominous, as I was simply left waiting for whatever terror was ready to tear apart my ear drums next (more screaming alien, not that I’m complaining, these vocals sound sick).
Track three is mercifully calmer, though that in and of itself is unnerving. With subtle instrumentation in the background and harsh but not alien-sounding vocals in the foreground, this was my song to relax for a moment, catch my breath, and steel myself for the absolute mayhem coming next. It was also nice that it was right in the middle, like an intermission. Track four also has a more subtle instrumentation compared to earlier songs, but the vocals on this track are absolutely demonic. I was no longer being pulled away by an alien or yelled at by one, I was in the midst of being brutally tortured by one that was enjoying every agonizing moment of it. This song felt like how it feels when I’m getting a tattoo and for some reason I can’t think about anything except the most painful things imaginable while trying to distract myself from the pain. The final chapter of this thing is ironically called “Epitome of Silence.” It is anything but. Combining metallic clanging with creepy instrumentation and vocals now so alien they’re echoing throughout like we’re now floating through space and time, this album ends with its creepiest track yet, and I couldn’t be more grateful.
If you’re into music that sends chills down your spine, is hard to listen to with headphones in, and makes you question your reality, this album is perfect for you. If you are easily scared by the house readjusting in the middle of the night, I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it unless you’re like me and enjoy being scared. All in all, an absolutely fantastic project that is now in my “scariest black metal albums ever” list.