Úden – Úden (9th Meridian) review at Heathen Harvest


Is there such a thing as musical attraction?  Meaning:  Is there something connecting two minds together through the medium of the musical spectrum?  Certainly, I believe so.  When I reviewed the Nagrindr Úden split, Úden was the unknown project, joined together with Nagrindr in unholy sound and texture.  Having this original experience only helps to perpetuate the new journey set forth here in this eponymous release.

There seems to be a certain urgency, a deep yearning, infused into each of the 5 tracks presented.  Although varied and independent, each track brings together nuance and effortless cohesion to form an album-sustaining collective.  I’ve written about this collective before.  Some call it track progression or flow.  The collective power of an album can be weighed by the tremors from track A resonating into track B, and so on.  This force is of immense importance, in my opinion, especially when the sounds being worked with fall into this sort of genre specification.

Altogether, it’s not the elements, sounds, or samples used that truly give this work its power.  Indeed, the sounds and expressions found within are fairly typical of dark ambient as a whole.  I believe that it’s the way that they are used that truly shows their power.  It’s a creeping synth module here, a distorted string there; each song bears the collective mind as that of the album.  Howling, barren winds set the stage for countless groans, clanks, whispers, and layered ambience throughout.  “The Joseph Curwen Portrait” certainly sets the mood for the rest of the album.  Being the most “commercial track, it allows an easy step into the deeper darkness of later experiences.  By the time “The R’lyeh Sleep” reaches the halfway point, the mind fully grasps the innermost workings and palatable atmosphere of the created work.  All things begin to reach new levels, and the mix is quite intoxicating.

It comes to mind that the influence of Raison d’EtreVond, and perhaps Lustmord are present within the finished work.  It’s a quieter, more introspective look, however, free of loud, jarring crashes and molested torque knobs.  Almost an ethereal feel throughout, the tracks simmer in sadness, isolation, and pure despair.  It occurs that this album has many uses.  Meditative experience is allowed to express itself, as is the use of the tracks as a peaceful descent into the land of Nod.  There is nothing pretentious or fake here.  It is a pure, aural experience, one that can be enjoyed multiple times as the need shows itself.

In all, the most enjoyable experience was leaving this album on repeat while closing my eyes and relaxing.  I would have been content to do so for hours.  There is something attractive about its essence, the pure energy and resonance that seems so hard to find these days.  Though I don’t typically point out one track in particular that spoke to me, I wish to do so in this review.  I found track 4, “Faith Crisis”, to illustrate best the soul of the contained work.  Coming after the juggernaut “The R’lyeh Sleep”, “Faith Crisis” seems to exude the pure soul of this effort.  A wandering, desolate track of massive feeling and expression.

In short, I recommend this work quite highly.  If you have the opportunity to obtain this album in any medium, I encourage you to do so.  This is a masterpiece of our modern times.

Track List:

01) The Joseph Curwen Portrait
02) Urban Paranoia
03) The R’lyeh Sleep
04) Faith Crisis
05) Among the Grey

Rating: 5/5
Written by: Asche


~ by Úden on 30/04/2013.

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