We are here again. Once more unto the breach as yet another jarring and atonal soundscape unfolds in front of our already familiar ears. Granted this time we are dealing with a predominantly Black Metal (or blackened metal) band, however just how much more of this dissonant wizardry can possibly be released is cause for wonder.
Anyway, Dodecahedron released their debut four years ago to much applause from the internet and associated critics (however, I never got round to that particular release). There's cause for some applause again this time around as what we have here is largely intelligently written and well structured.
It is cleverly paced to. Check out the unexpected pace of "Interlude" which although at first seems to take things down a gear or two actually sets up the rest of the release perfectly and does very little to alter course but you actually feel like you are slowing down even though there is still an almost tribal feel to the proceedings.
I start to struggle with "Kwintessen" when I realise that after five tracks ("Interlude" aside) there's very little variation to the sound of each track. Odd maybe to expect any massive changes from track to track on what is at it's core a BM record but I do find the tracks take an all to familiar form after the first three tracks. I also can't help but feel that there's a little bit of doing what is possible instead of doing what is actually good here. "Octahedron - Harbringer" just doesn't need the clunky, industrial passage around the four minute mark, it seems a poor excuse to take the track off in a direction that it doesn't actually need to go in.
The melodic, dreamy intro to "Dodecahedron - An Ill Defined Air Of Otherness" does seem to set up the whole track to not really fit together, like whatever comes after the intro was written for another track and somehow got recorded over one track in error.
For a sound described as "unique", "alien" and "terrifying" I get more "confusion" than any of the other descriptions. There's a distinct lack of cohesion throughout much of "Kwintessen" which I acknowledge may come together on repeated listens but I can't help but feel that life maybe too short for this album for me to ever really come to terms with it. I get bits of Ulcerate atmospheres mixed with (modern) Enslaved like song structures and it doesn't always work.
Judge for yourself here.