It’s the weekend! What better way to get it started than with the latest installment of “Funeral Doom Friday”. This weekly column looks to shed some light onto some of the darkest, most depressing, and discordant metal out there. Funeral Doom stems from the deepest depths of Death-Doom and Dirge music. Each week, the goal is to highlight some of the newest music or rediscover classic works from some of the earliest bands and originators such as Australia’s Mournful Congregation, United States’s Evoken, UK’s Esoteric and the Finnish Thergothon. Feel free to share your opinions and suggestions in the comments!
This week's edition presents an intriguing feature. The Russian solo effort of Talsur has been creating various styles of doom metal for a couple of years now. The releases have gone between stoner, atmospheric, and most recently funeral doom. Slough of Despond arrived on the 13th. Talsur constructed a haunting, nautical narrative for the new album, which reads:
In this all-consuming void begins to be born fog. Fog that hangs over the endless ocean by leaden oppression. Silence kills. Water does not move. Only a lone ship, dark and mysterious, silently follows a slow stream. And no matter where it floats. After all, there is no one. Absolute solitude. No one can hear the desperate cries for help. There is only you and your terrible thoughts and memories of the past. Maybe it's time to end it all? Indeed, in this slough of despond death has never been greater. And you can not do anything with it.
Thankfully, the music of Talsur follows suit. Each of the seven songs on Slough of Despond slips deeper into an existential crisis. Through the recruitment of harsh growls and occasional clean vocals, a sense of wavering occurs. The central character grapples with the notion of life. An array of guitar riffs and keys accentuates the inner turmoil. The strings dance between triumphant, traditional doom tones and funerary drone. This is most apparent in the transition between "Seas of Doom" and "White Widow." Yet, each moment on Slough of Despond seems to pique interest. The shifts in atmosphere, the emotive range, and overall musicianship makes this album wonderful.
Talsur's on Twitter, where you can keep up with his happenings. Slough of Despond is available in a digital format on Bandcamp for $1. Give the album a listen below and check out prior releases as well. Have a great weekend!