The product of stark influences finding harmony across the expanse of the Atlantic Ocean, Under A Full Moon has tapped into the mental descent that spans across the globe with their seventh full-length LP, Our Riches. Originally formed in 2016 under the name Disrhythmia as a solo project from Evan, drummer for blackened grind outfit FVRLVRN, a new type of sonic brevity would be achieved when Norwegian producer Gjøran (of industrial/demoscene project Proteque) joined the ranks in early 2017. Our Riches marks the tenth official release for Under a Full Moon, melding a dark fog of ambiance that enshrouds the crushing doom ferocity that has the listener trapped within the confines of their own mind.
From the dissonant echoes of synth that begin the opener, “A Thought that became a Dream,” we can see through small slats the suffocating darkness that is beginning to crawl towards us, fully engulfing the listener with the first explosion of distorted guitar and cymbal. At that moment, it’s clear that there is no free space left for us under the glacial tempos coupled with the layering of light noise and modular production. Make no mistake, this is some intensely slow and methodical doom that entwines itself across influences of atmospheric and depressive black metal, but there is never a feeling of repetition as the music works to create an individual journey through the listener’s own emotions. The aforementioned track along with the subsequent “A Newfound Hope” and “The Coming Morrow” can be seen as a multi-tiered extension of sorrow billowing out through massive levels of gain that surround Evan’s growling delivery that can only be described as bestial, all of it resting in the tomb constructed by Gjøran’s howling and wind-blown production.
Though not everything that is found on Our Riches remains in a level of bleakness and despair. Tracks like “Soil” and “My Final Strife” offer several bright layers that, depending on where this album may find you, can be translated as the beginnings of a new dawn or merely an acceptance of the anguish that takes form over the first half. And just as our connection to the music may change depending on our own state, the songs work in the same vein that give them a very natural progression that make them much more expansive than your typical slow churning doom. For instance, “Cesspool of Sorrow and Pain” follows an incline that collides into a mass of wall-to-wall distortion and breakneck percussion that makes the return to those pummeling riffs that much more satisfying.
So whether it may be the tortured misery of “A Thought that became a Dream,” the new horizon in “Soil,” or the coming swarm that signals the closer “My Last Tide,” Our Riches is more than a simple depressive doom record. It is instead an experience that can change form based on the connection from the listener, giving it those rare instances when an album feels like something that is actually alive.
Releases July 12, 2019
Description by Ryan Ruple