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Dark Buddha Rising - II [Neurot Recordings - 2018]

A decade since their debut release I, Dark Buddha Rising have returned with the widely anticipated blackened, psychedelic, doom of their 7th release II. The band hail from the town of Tampere in Finland, their lineup consisting of of J. Ramanen on drums, P. Ramanen on bass, V Ajomo on guitar, J. Saarivouri on synth and vocalist M Neuman. II represents the band’s first release for their new lable Neurot Recordings, with whom they signed two years ago.

The album features two long tracks of anbient, proggy, psychedelic, blackened, sludgy metal. That sounds like a mouthful but to try and reduce your description of this band down any further is not doing them justice. What we can say is that this is beautifully dark, and brutal stuff with the lightest of touches in places.

Opening track "Mahathgata I" is monumentally slow and brutally heavy with just enough of a hint of the psychedelic about it, it lumbers along like some great monolithic offering to the gods of Mogadon. The vocals that emanate from within are a cry for help from the souls devoured in the process of bringing this most ancient of rituals to life. Clean sung or chanted they bring a sense of despair to the recording, and an almost atavistic reverence for the horrible, tenebrous consciousness that is being summoned across the aeons. This is dark cosmic horror being brought to existence through your speakers.

"Mahathgata II" begins quite differently, with the sound of tinkling bells, electronic drones and background chanting setting the tone, only occasionally punctured by stabs of Ajomo’s liquid guitar. This dark ambience eventually gives way to some more prominent chanted vocals which take centre stage. At over ten minutes in length this track is a giant slab of dark ambient for those with a deliciously dark heart. The second half of the track takes us back into the blackened sludge territory of the opener. The vocals sound pained and the guitars grind before the track falls back into ambient territory, taking us to the album’s conclusion with a dark, atmospheric wind down that leaves the listener calmed but no less perturbed.

Brutal, unsettling and quite brilliant this new album from Dark Buddha Rising sounds like the ritual rising of the Old Ones, is that the sound of Nyarlathotep rising from his aeons long slumber? Is ancient R’lyeh about to rise?

Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5Rating: 5 out of 5

Darren Charles
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