vidnaObmana - Legacy [Release - 2004]With Legacy, dark ambient legend vidnaObmana concludes his Dante Trilogy with yet another endless CD full of, hmmmm, well … dark sounds.
For anyone into goth / dark / ambient / electronic music, vidnaObamana is some sort of reference, the pope of dark ambient. He has been at it for years, releasing something like 30 full lengths. In terms of number of releases, he probably comes second only to people like Merzbow and Muslimgauze.
To be fair, Dirk Serries (yep, the real name is a little less mysterious) doesn’t indulge in one genre, favouring repetition over innovation. Legacy mixes elements from industrial, ambient, IDM, post-rock, prog… It marks a change in vidnaObmana’s music, Serries apparently wanting to “upgrade his own experience as a musician”, whatever it means. In order to fulfil his ambitions (devouts would say “vision”), he enlisted the help of several guest musicians: a couple of Belgian bluesmen provided “recycling sources” on bass and guitar, Neurosis’ Steve Von Till sings on the first track and Porcupine Tree’s Steve Wilson plays a lengthy solo on the last track. All is fine and dandy, dark as it should be, at times some bits are very nice but it fails to convince me. Firstly, if the record is a bit more rhythm oriented than most of Serries body of work, said rhythm are very amateurish, a shame when the sound quality is so good throughout the album. Secondly, for all the dark ambitions, there is an undeniable cheesy aspect to the music. It’s trying to be dark, but it’s not quite managing to be. A bit annoying when you know Dante’s work…
I’m not a vidnaObamna fan, but I’m pretty sure fan will love it and consider Legacy as a beautiful conclusion to a groundbreaking trilogy. If you are a doubter too, rest assured that you’re right.François Monti