He Dreamt Of Ascension - Hypnagogia
Released off label 2017
Hypnagogia is a great album.
That's how I'm starting this review, because that's the thing you want to know, yeah? You look at the rating and you want to see what I thought, so I'm just gonna preface this review with that statement.
When I grabbed Hypnagogia from the promopool, it was just labeled with 'Industrial' as the tag, but this album is much, much more than that. This album sounds like a lot like the darker side of alternative rock that was the epitome of the late 90s sound. There are little flickers of David Bowie influence in some of the vocals, but the main feeling I pick up from Hypnagogia is a hint of Marilyn Manson's earlier work (think Portrait Of An American Family) along with a nice heaping helping of A Perfect Circle. Tying everything together makes a nice, depressing sort of sound that I am in love with.
The entire album clocks in just short of an hour with a mixture of longer songs (three of them over six minutes in length) with shorter offerings interspersed between the full, longer songs. The production is wonderful, mixing low, fuzzy guitars and basslines with crystal clear synthlines and piano notes; a place for everything and everything in its place. Some might be a little put off by the length of some of the tracks, but since I'm a big fan of doom metal, those six minute tracks don't do anything to push me off of them. If nothing else, it makes me like them more.
I can't just talk about the positives, though. Everything has a negative to it, even when the positives far, far outshine them. The only negatives I can find are the shorter songs on the album; 'Certainty' and 'Hypnagogia Part Two' could both be better suited having been fleshed out to full length songs rather than the snippets they became - especially 'Hypnagogia Part Two', which sounds like a spirited homage to The Doors. 'Miles And Miles Behind' is a short instrumental track right after its partner 'Leave It All Behind', which doesn't sound bad in and of itself, but might have been better used just being on the end of the previous track. Listening to the two back to back is fine, but if it comes up in shuffle by its lonesome I might end up just skipping it.
But, as said earlier: Hypnagogia is a great album. I had never heard of He Dreamt Of Ascension before pulling them from the promo pool, but holy fuck I'm glad I did. I'm eagerly anticipating future music from HDOA and so should you.
Favorite Track: Jackal.
Least Favorite Track: Miles And Miles Behind.Apr 19 2017
Official release released by the artist themselves without the backing of a label.
Fat bastard/bringer of disaster behind Lights Out, God Help Me. Occasionally does things for Brutal Resonance.
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