Written by: The Voiceless Apparition
Hello again everyone. I'm sorry it took me so long to return back to my dungeon synth/dark ambient series. Life gets in the way, but I have returned to this subseries.
So today's review is for the stellar debut ambient album from the Australian atmospheric viking black metal music project Vindakldr entitled Ambient I, released back on February 5th, 2015 through the always reliable and beautiful Bandcamp. As stated this was the artists first foray into the dark ambient genre and my oh my what an absolutely amazing introduction! So lets dive on in.
Things begin on a downtrodden note with "Moon Snatcher." A hauntingly beautiful and moody opener with eerie and sinister melodies enveloped in a juxtaposition of shimmering and gorgeous swaths of synth glory. Meditative all-the-way through, while still delving deep into melancholy. An absolutely stellar way to begin an album. "Forest Mist" is a more fantasy-leaning song in my opinion. It gives me feelings of walking through an open field, snow falling from the sky, and impenetrable grayness clouding the sun from sight, but you do not feel uneasy, instead you feel a great sense of comfort.
There's an encompassing darkness with "Embers of Burning Light". The sinister eeriness returns again but with less sadness and more of a triumphant nature to it as well. I love the simplicity of the synth-line being the main focus of the song even though it doesn't really change much throught the 5 minute and 10 second runtime. The synth work is soothing, lulling you into a an ocean of tranquil bliss. It feels as if you have fought a hard battle throughout the day and now you can finally rest your body and drift into a serene sleep. "The Fairy That Disappeared" is the mammoth of the album, clocking in at a whopping 13 minutes and 32 seconds, but man it is pure bliss! This gorgeous reverb-drenched song is a journey in-and-of itself.
"The Lonely Steed" and "Hibernation In Winter Castle" are the last two tracks I will discuss, and they represent the two opposite ends of the spectrum perfectly. "The Lonely Steed" is a very David Lynchian Twin Peaks like track. Ominous, evocative, and subtle. I love the simplicity of this song. It's kind of unsettling in some ways but all-the-while it's still very soothing. "Hibernation In Winter Castle" is an interesting way to end an album. Instead of ending on a triumphant and joyous note, we close out this chapter with an icy-cold frost to it. The darkness is all-encompassing. You imagine yourself freezing to death, but instead of feeling fear and dread you feel a strange sense of comfort and ease. The last remaining minutes of this song lull you into a sense of serenity and finality to this concept we call existence.
Not much more needs to be said about this album. This is one of my top 3 favorite dark ambient/dungeon synth releases of all time. While this holds all of the hallmarks of a dark ambient release, I feel that this is a highly unique and original album. The sense of atmosphere is sometimes so overwhelming, in the best of possible ways. If you are looking for a highly engaging experience through the world of instrumental synth and keyboard-based music, this is a must listen. But even if you aren't typically a fan of this genre I'd still highly recommend you checking out this album. This is as close as you can get to a masterpiece in the form of audio. This goes beyond music, this is pure art. Bliss, melancholy, fantasy, and atmosphere in its purest form.
Vindkaldr - Ambient I was released Feb. 5th, 2015
Vindkaldr can be found:
We provide thoughtful reviews of music that is heavy, gloomy...and loud enough to wake us from slumber. Written by a highfalutin peasantry!