For some reason, the album cover always makes me think this is something totally different to what it really is. So I'm always pleasantly surprised when I am reminded that it's outstanding moody black metal.
I don't know what the hell is going on with black metal around this days but I like it. And this Feral Light's album is one of the greatest works I have heard in quite a few years. The way it takes you to that gloomy corner where ferousciously makes you yearn for more with its abstraction charged of blackened post-metal. It is remarkable. One of my favourites for these year. Life Vapor is a lighthouse that guides into one of the heaviest atmospheres in metal nowadays.
Favorite track: Assuage.
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A way forward scrawled on obscure hands
Scorched by the touch of the expanse
Grasp past the sun, tethers unravel
Pull from the dark and carry forth
Explode into splinters
Embers rise to flames
Order in ashes
The blaze splits the skies
A middle Course
Grey now vivid crimson
2020 marks the first release of Feral Light under the Hypnotic Dirge Records roster. The name is not new to the scene, being led by guitarist Andy Schoengrund (ex. Empires, ex. Wolvhammer), who formed Feral Light in 2015 with drummer Andrew Reesen, and shortly thereafter released a demo, an EP, and two full-lengths - 2017’s Void/Sanctity and 2019’s excellent Fear Rides a Shadow.
Firmly anchored in Blackened Post-Metal, Life Vapor - their third album -, not only builds up on the foundations of its predecessor, but it also cranks it up on all fronts. It instantly pulls you in with its killer mix of melodic and dissonant riffing, combining and incorporating various styles including elements of post-metal, black n roll, doom, and second-wave black metal. This album is loaded with catchy riffs and memorable hooks exhibiting momentous black n roll sections that transform into triumphant post-metal, somber doom metal, and everywhere in between. Life Vapor is an album that manages to explore a wide berth of what the blackened sub-genres can manifest while remaining rooted by strong and purposeful songwriting and a balanced mix that highlights the instrumentation.
Life Vapor will be released on Hypnotic Dirge Records on May 22, 2020 on Digipack CD format. A Feral Light bundle including the CD, Shirt, Patch, and Sticker will also be available.
released May 22, 2020
Recorded and mixed by Kyle Kaliszewski
Mastered by James Plotkin
Artwork and layout by Unexpected Specter, Logo by Heath Rave
"The abstraction the band achieves on this release is impressive given how familiar and poignant these tunes sound -- for black metal that hits all the spots and doesn't give you anything you didn't need, Life Vapor is where it's at."
"‘Life Vapor’ is an easy high recommendation to fans of modern yet divergent black metal forms and post-metal informed extreme metal who’d yearn for something outside of dry norms and dirtless renderings."
"It packs a lot of meaty content into 39 minutes, both of the instant appeal variety, and the slower burning atmospheric kind. if you’re a fan of blackened, hooked metallic darkness, then Life Vapor is one to check out"
"Although in places this is a pretty savage album, but it is packed with melody, tunefulness and great riffs that stick in your head. This is an album that works on songwriting, rather than huge production or bombast. These are very well written and played songs, and that is where this album shines."
-Musipedia of Metal
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Hypnotic Dirge Records is an independent record label and webshop based in Esquimalt, Canada active since 2008. Our intention and raison d'être is to release quality expressive and eclectic art through aural manifestations.