Review of Outer Tehom
Written by Casey Douglass
From the Ukraine's Oleg Puzan comes this thick drone album of darkest black, every track a perfect 13 minute summoning of elder gods forgotten in time.
I liked the concept of Outer Tehom as soon as I read the above blurb. All 4 tracks are 13 minutes exactly and anything that claims to evoke images of elder gods being summoned gets an instant thumbs up from me. Anyway, to the tracks...
This first track opens with a deep vibrating drone, much like you might find some Buddhist monks chanting, if they happen to worship a dark god that is. It gives way to what sounds like an audio capture of some firebrand preacher warning and talking about demons. Then it all fades to a quiet deep pulsing and quiet rumbling that unnerves as much as it soothes. Towards the end of the track, tuneless chimes pierce the darkness, like a lone music box left playing its song as it winds down in a tomb.
Mortal Skin starts with a sensation of deep waves, building in volume as the soundscape fills out.
After a short while, a voice can be heard uttering uncaught words and raging. This whole track conjured a possession scene from various films to my mind, Evil Dead, The Exorcist, you name it, if it has a scene with strange intonation and bodily possession, this track will make you think of it.
Snake Hole is a rumbling droning soundscape with plenty of distant echoes and sounds of vast distance. Strangely, it is one that flows past me with little of it lodging in my memory, like a dream fading quickly upon waking. No less enjoyable for it however.
This track features howling wind and distant voices in conversation, bringing to mind a large temple with some strange rite occurring. As the listener, you feel far enough away to be safe but close enough to feel unsteadied by the rumbling vibrations coming from the ground. After a crescendo comes a lull with soft whispered sounds and pregnant silences before it builds once more. This pattern repeats a few times, the ante upped each time until a strange horn is heard above the growing silence as the track ends.
I felt the first two tracks were by far the strongest and most memorable. The drones of Black Arts and the demonic voice in Mortal Skin really provide something solid to focus on and enjoy. Snake Hole and Arcane Shrine are a little more sedate and spacial, and while pleasing, had less in them that appealed to my ear.
I give Outer Tehom 3.5/5, the two tracks that appealed to me the most doing the bulk of the lifting. Other tastes will beg to differ I am sure, but it was almost a case of liking those so much, that the latter ones really had a job to shine in their own gloomy light.
Check out Cryo Chamber here to view more information and purchasing options.
I was given a free copy of the album to review.
Album Title: Outer Tehom
Artist: Oleg Puzan
Mastering : Simon Heath
Artwork : Nihil
Label : Cryo Chamber
Released : 18th November 2014