Cryxuss hails from Italy, and as far as I can tell, this is his second album; his first seems to be Harey on the Torrentech netlabel. First impressions? I have to say I love the cover. If you click on the picture on the right, you can see it in full size on the original release page.
We open with “Tamura”, where a sudden burst of heavy rain and a woman’s voice (Moira Fogarty, reading from a LibriVox reading of Sun Tzu’s The Art of War) lead into dense pads with a chord sequence which stitches the track together. Tinkling keyboards echo above all of this, and it moves forward when a pattern of beats is taken up around halfway through. “Abstract Joke” is very rhythmic, with a driving bass, pulsating percussive effects and short snippets of vocals, which propel the track forward with a huge sense of urgency. Again, around halfway through, the patterns change and the rhythm changes too, with little staccato synth bursts, although the pace remains the same.
Fast fade to “Ethereal Creature”. Again, this one moves along at quite a pace. Layered piano strides a repetitive bass motif, and the percussion, whilst subtle, is always present. That heavy rain from the opening track returns in “This Will Be My Last Submersion”, which starts as pretty much an ambient track apart from periodic clicks which define a tempo. Soon, the clicks are joined by percussion which is subtle, but almost tribal in style. Snippets of Moira Fogarty’s spoken word drift into and out of the mix.
The closing track, “Need to Hurt You”, continues the theme used in its predecessor. Piano arpeggios rumble lazily over distant, high, keening chords. I hesitate to mention Frippertronics in two consecutive reviews, but the influence is definitely here. A few distorted, delayed chords, and suddenly the ride is over.