Evoken / Beneath the Frozen Soil - split

Posted on Monday, January 17, 2011

Evoken were playing Funeral Doom before the label technically existed, I think that speaks volumes of their longevity and inspiration to the new breed. It also, like most things, reminds me that I am aging rapidly. Which in turn puts me in the perfect mood for their new material featured on this split. At 42 minutes, their half is longer than any Metalcore/Deathcore album recorded in the last decade, and arguably higher quality, at least when it comes to the desolation factor. And there is plenty of exhaustive desolation to go around. Opening cut, “Omniscient,” might be the best song they’ve ever written, and that is saying much of a band I have literally worshipped since 1995. No band puts to record the truest feelings of pure depression better in my book (not even Thergothon who they took their name from). The beautiful clean guitar in “Omniscient” has swept me away to the land of sleep every night since I picked up a copy of this. The ominously deep yet mellow and reserved Death roar of John Paradiso assuring me that thankfully my sleep will one day be eternal. And not soon enough. The two cuts and instrumental that follow are much in the Antithesis of Light / A Caress of the Void vein, sure to please any fan of the band. And while I’m at it, anyone who is not a fan of Evoken please kill yourselves immediately before I risk the chance of meeting you. Beneath the Frozen Soil aren’t bad, but for me their half is simply incidental. They are in the same stylistic vein as Evoken which has them pretty much fucked considering the inherent competitive nature of splits. I’m pretty sure only a handful of Funeral Doom bands could actually hold their own against the Jersey legends (Shape of Despair, Ahab, Rememberance, or Skepticism might have a fighting chance). So, a tough break for them. Still it must be nice to at least be partially involved with something so essential.

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