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January 2018
Released: 2017, Ashen Dominion
Rating: 4.0/5
Reviewer: UK Team

Enigmatic Ukrainian act Raventale return with their fourth slice of ethereal Black Metal didvination. The brainchild of Astaroth Merc, who is responsible for all instrumentations and vocals, Raventale weave a dark and mystical tapestry. Very affecting stuff.

The album opens with the immense "Gemini - Behind Two Black Mountains", full of portentous, sublime and ghostly riffing. It is akin to opening up a portal in time and space to a spectral netherworld. Its is spectacularly otherwordly, and boasts some glorious solos and harmonies. Next up is "Bringer Of Celestial Anomalies", a more abrasive track featuring embittered ravings interspersed with a sense of childlike wonder. A sudden surge of adrenaline lifts proceedings, but fails to truly save the track as it goes on a bit too long.

"At The Halls of Pleiades" returns the album to form with its crushing grooves. A hypnotic, pulsating melodrama, it is doomfully drawn out, like sucking poison from a deeply infected wound. A vicious blast laden section wakes the listener from celestial stupor, before lulling back into its misty slumber. "New World Planetarium" rounds off proceedings. A lengthy, whimsical intro akin to old Burzum ushers in a morpheus-like dreamstate. Full of suffocating hopelessness, it is by turns aching, yearning and jarring.

"Planetarium" is a truly soul draining experience. It manages to be both uplifing and devastating at the same time. It is pacy when it needs to be, but mostly it floats along like a Black Metal magic carpet. An inspired release.

Review by Owen Thompson
Track Listing

1. Gemini - Behind Two Black Mountains
2. Bringer Of Celestial Anomalies
3. At The Halls Of Pleiades
4. New World Planetarium


Astaroth Merc - Everything



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