Edoma / Encapsulating all the best aspects of Black and Death Metal
From The Abyss: 15 February 2021
It is rare that any Russian Metal crosses my path, so when a band that sounds as good as St. Petersburg’s Black/Death Metal quartet Edoma comes to my attention, I have twice as many reasons to be excited.
Edoma – Immemorial Existence (Petrichor)
Release Date: 19 February 2021
Words: Jools Green
Their debut release ‘Immemorial Existence’ was recorded in 2019. It saw a limited release as digital and cassette in 2020, but is now set to be unleashed on the wider Metal community, thanks to Petrichor Records having the wisdom to snap up this absolute gem of an album.
‘Immemorial Existence’ is a nine track, forty-four-minute chunk of permafrost influenced, slightly progressive Black/Death Metal that is icy to the core. It also includes a version of their digital single ‘Herald of Death’ released 16 December 2018.
This album resonates with me on every level. With chilling acerbic vocals, equally icy intense riffing, impressive leads with strong drum battery bolstering the sound further, all delivered in a way that, as a whole, encapsulates for me all the best aspects of Black and Death Metal.
It is sufficiently icy and dark to reach my own cold black heart in a hugely impactful manner.
Commencing with the pulsating ominous guitar opener, ‘Gates’, it forges towards that previously mentioned single ‘Herald of Death’. With its intense opening waves of riffing spiralling up to meet the drum onslaught and the superbly acerbic vocals delivering the macabre deathly message, the whole thing melded together is just so sinisterly atmospheric and engaging that every aspect of the sound spirals around completely engulfing and immersing the listener. Just like the all engulfing snow in the lyrics, it is completed by some utterly sublime closing leadwork, which tears itself free and spirals dramatically.
The next offering, ‘Edoma’ is intense dark and driving, with emerging busts of riffing which evolve as the track progresses. ‘Northern Heart’ is as icy as the title suggests, taking you on an imagined journey through eternal winter forests, completed with icy leadwork and haunting clean vocals to close.
On ‘Depletion of Faith’ the cold driving riffs carry a lyrical message. As described by the title, it takes a hard look at life, faith and existence, which on many levels reflects harshly our modern time and situation. The closing lead swathe punches through in defiance.
‘Labyrinth of Torment’ has a brutally dynamic delivery and hugely engaging repeat driving riffs, which are occasionally broken by a short dark melodic burst, with lyrics that begin to paint a picture but remain enticingly vague enough to leave you pondering unanswerable questions. It is a superb track that culminates on a magnificently engaging chunk of closing leadwork.
‘Last Hours’ is packed with dark driving intensity, but with slick directing switching that ensures you maintain your focus and interest. It contains some of my favourite lyrics of the album:
“Only ashes on dead shores,
And the verse in a silence is heard.
I’ll leave a shadow on the lacy waves.
The ocean is eternal grave of fallen stars,
Will carry away the mystery of years,
But time will let you know the essence of sadness.
I learned it all in moment.
I walked into the darkness like shapeless ghost.
And I’ll never come back, it’s over…
The soul is tired of this eternal pain,
That black-winged raven has seen,
The one who walks our souls to rest.
And the cry is heard in lonely night:
Why do you look at my suffering?!
And I struggled in agony to the pain in the throat.
And I saw the fire long ago snuffed
Which filled the veins with the river.
And finally elders say a prayer for me.”
‘Demons of Eternal Twilight’ has a slower pace, but what it loses in speed it makes up for in both punch and an ability to wend its way in the most engagingly dark and convoluted manner imaginable, ebbing and flowing with each turn. The final assault, ‘Permafrost’ is sinister and engaging, continuing the icy mood all the way to the close.
End to end ‘Immemorial Existence’ is a brutally and brilliantly engaging listen.
I have no favourite tracks, as each is as good as the others in their own unique way.
Every track is as powerful lyrically as it is musically.
This is an album that should offer a lot of appeal to fans of Mgła, Behemoth, Watain and Belphegor.
Available on cassette, vinyl as 180g audiophile vinyl with download card in silver, bone white or black vinyl, CD as a deluxe edition with slipcase. Visit napalmrecords.com/english/edoma/
Visit edoma.bandcamp.com/album/immemorial-existence for a digital copy.