An atmospheric intro comprised of an acoustic guitar and deep, male vocal chants sets the stage for DYSPERIUM’s self-titled debut, a gloomy stroll through Pagan-inspired Black Metal of the wood. The band (two gentleman from Oregon) sound like the offspring of AGALLOCH, later WINDUR and FALKENBACH’s more introspective moments, all wrapped in an earth, spacious and appropriately raw production, giving the album a very natural feel.
As hinted at by the first track, acoustic guitars play every bit as important a roll as the electrics, adding the forlorn atmosphere. Never eclipsing a moderate pace, the album borders on Doom in spots, and Goth in others, while never straying too far from the confines of “Forest” Metal.
The songs are mostly interchangeable, each possessing a myriad of vocal styles, progressively-minded drumming, near drone-like riffs, and lush acoustics. All this leaves the album as one better absorbed as a whole than in parts, with only sections of individual songs standing out amongst the drab backdrop.
DYSPERIUM’s song-craft has some definite growing to do, as nothing on the album is very memorable. However, this collection should still satisfy the appetite of genre fans searching out their next fix of melancholy.
(Online October 1, 2010)