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THE METAL OBSERVER - Underground Review - STARSHINE - Falling Star

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Starshine - Falling Star (7/10) - USA - 2007

Genre: Black Metal / Drone
Label: Self-production
Playing time: 41:25
Band homepage: -


  1. Knowing All Dark Things
  2. Witness His Hand
  3. Drowning (Silence Is An Answer)
  4. Falling Star
Starshine - Falling Star
There is something beautifully melancholy and depressive that captivates me about the world of one man, bedroom bound Black Metal projects. Maybe it’s because I am not the most adept at making friends myself or I find something self-realizing about an album of music created by just a single mind, simplistic yet pure. XASTHUR was the first band to come to my attention with “Nocturnal Poisoning” in 2002 and to a degree it’s an album that continues to come to mind as I listen to the peculiarly titled STARSHINE and his most recent demo “Falling Star.”
Predominantly the sense of atmosphere “Falling Star” creates takes me back to the early days of then little-known Malefic. Seemingly on purpose slip shod leads that fall out half way through a bar drive along gloomily over fuzzy and at the same time twinkly guitars that grate like tin foil in the mist over stripped and minimalist drum programming. STARSHINE remove the vocal element and much of the passé hiss in the production to create an almost funereal, early-PELICAN vibe and relentlessness.
“Falling Star” is a wonderful ode to how captivating simple music can be. Tempo changes are rare and diversify from relentlessly slow to a pacy slow early in the final track, thirty minutes and four tracks along. Guitar tones, effects and riffing selections never factor just driving leads over atmospheric ice sharp guitar work.
The lack of variation is both a curse and a blessing. A blessing in that the simplicity and abrasively depressing atmosphere envelopes you and takes hold, a truly magnificent album to lie back to and slip into a catatonic state, however like SUNNO ))) this is a niche listen that lacks any kind of hook or memorable riff, just a malaise. Even “Nocturnal Poisoning” had noteworthy riffs and desperate vocal work but “Falling Star” is minus both.
Nevertheless within the correct context STARSHINE are a project that carries a surprising amount of strength, utilizing a powerfully crafted wall of miserable noise. I’d be surprised if someone in the vein of Southern Comfort don’t pick STARSHINE up soon because this is some of the most competent depressive Black Metal I’ve heard for a while .

(Online July 7, 2007)

Richard Williams

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