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Xasthur's “A Gate through Bloodstained Mirrors” has now been re-issued three times, this time on Hydra Head Records in a 2 CD set including the 2001 “A Darkened Winter” Promo. So here's my question. If you're going to re-release an album with new/rare material on a second disc, why would you send promos of only the first disc? Of course, I'm biting my tongue a bit, but it just seems strange to me to say the least that a label would send out promotional material to have an album reviewed, but not include what makes the new re-release unique from the other versions.
The following tracks serve to bring down the now steadily pacing heartbeat and give one a chance to relax and be absorbed by the state of melancholic despair that we've all come to know Xasthur as being master of. For me this album is more special than any previous because I finally can hear through this music the Lycia influences that has has spoken of in a previous interview. Especially within the background atmosphereic guitar of Cemetery of Shattered Masks is this evident.
Xeno Volcano transports the listener to an icy landscape of luminescence and barren, flat terrain. "Tendency" unveils a land where the sun never rises and the moon remains forever full. The landscape is cold darkness illuminated by the moon’s silver light. Snow and ice reflect the soft light of the shadowy landscape beneath you.
...the production is top notch. Filled with immensely heavy atmospheres, it ladens upon mists within your speakers and gently drifts through your mind as an infesting evil virus. This is a great debut effort from a new band on the French front.
My favorite on the album “Clover” which throws you into a vast depression, with mournful verses such as: “I tried hard to be good to you. I felt him inside my head. It’s impossible to just be cool. Please, please, please, don’t, don’t, don’t walk like my simple hope.” I almost fall down into tears when he sings them. But I step out of the song momentarily just to get a grip on my own feelings.
The word “Topology” comes from the Greeks, basically it is a mathematical study of how objects are assembled and the manner in which they take up space. Fitting then, that this Greek electro musician would use this word to describe his music. It seems to illustrate and map out a very peculiar landscape, the operative question would be, if this is a “Basic Topology,” of what then? Even the dancier numbers on this release are much more complicated than your typical industrial dance groups, strange and undefined organisms float by the cold mechanical landscape, like an industrial-strength space battle happening within a microscopic bacteria culture. It is not without humor, and the bits of personality that slip through give you a good indication of the well-balanced mind that is at work here.
Besides being one of the best goregrind albums ever produced, Harvesting the Cunt Nectar has everything to offer to any fan of the genre, from crushingly heavy riffs and drum samples to the sickest vocals that the genre has to offer.