The Archer Takes Aim by Funereal Presence (The Ajna Offensive)
Funereal Presence is the solo project of Negative Plane drummer Bestial Devotion – a black metal manifesto whose foreboding reveries are absolutely breath-taking. Comparisons to acts such as Burzum and Xasthur may result, but Funereal Presence is within its own desolate league, creating masterworks that will tantalize the senses. The Archer Takes Aim is the glorious debut from the New York-based Funereal Presence – four cuts of auditory devastation that will maintain your undivided attention throughout its entire length.
The disc opens with the grandiose strains of The Tower Falls, a mighty commencement that is staggering to behold. The vocals alternative between the harrowing growls to chilling clean vocals, mixed with shoegaze guitars, thriving blast beats and otherworldly chimes – a remarkable achievement to be sure – and that’s only the first track.
Gestalt des Endes is up next, scathing and confrontational in scope, an ambitious effort at a mighty 16-plus minutes. This cut is a phenomenal magnum opus that could be the soundtrack to your most tormenting of nightmares. The vocal work bleeds through venomously, the chants and screams searing a hole deep into your consciousness.
A burning church organ from the bowels of hell opens the title cut The Archer Takes Aims, before slamming into a relentless barrage of euphoric madness. Dämmerlicht closes out the grim meanderings, an instrumental assault that will leave you feeling both melancholic and restless.
The Archer Takes Aim by Funereal Presence is USBM in its finest hour – a thoroughly stunning work that should appeal to black metal purists as well as others wishing to discover a truly intriguing collection of dark artistry.
(Review by Ken Morton)
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