Blood of the Black Owl - Blood of the Black Owl
Bindrune Recordings
Black Noise/Funeral Doom
7 songs (70'25")
Release year: 2007
Blood of the Black Owl on Bindrune Recordings
Reviewed by Alex

What would it feel like to step into the ancient pine forest? Treetops shielding daylight for constant darkness, a bunch of old trees dying, moss covered damp patches, narrow trails … If you need a soundtrack on your journey, Blood of the Black Owl would provide it on its self-titled debut.

Coming from Pacific Northwest, Chet W. Scott, the lonesome soul behind Blood of the Black Owl perhaps not only took those walks through the forest, he also met some age old shamans meditating in the hidden hut in the middle of the dark wilderness. Blood of the Black Owl, for most of its 70 minutes, rolls at the listener with its unhurried meditative trance, fluctuating between black noise and funeral doom.

Slow and measured beat is supporting distorted beyond recognition guitars, forming barely perceptible melodic progression on Like a Coffin Chasing a Womb, His Chariot Becomes a Southern Bloodstorm (I love the title). Hissing and clean synth background finally welcomes a funeral doom burying melody on Drinking the Blood of a Lion. The pressure grows slowly as if the skull is placed under plunger. The Thunderous Hooves of Two Goats in the Sky is even more majestic, melody flowing through low-tone throbbing and reverberating guitar, this song being the only one where Chet elected to “crush” eventually with a double bass. Mostly, especially from Uwwalo on through the album’s last three tracks, the pace is even slower, more hypnotic, the beat adding conga style, but much lower in register, drums, with occasional bells and nature fuzz (A Coven of Vultures).

Blood of the Black Owl vocalizing is really not the sound of a human voice. It is rather a creak of an olden twisted tree snag being pulled out from the ground, or, if this tree was alive, this is an ages-old Treant living through its last days. Blood of the Black Owl forest is thus filled with suffering archaic dark creatures, howling owls (obviously I could not find anything original and had to rip off the band’s moniker) and werewolves.

Inspired by nature, Blood of the Black Owl is close in design and concept to labelmates Celestiial, only instead of frozen north we are traveling through the woodlands, or, and I am stretching the envelope here, Summoning, but Blood of the Black Owl is much more meditative, a lot less melodic, at least on the surface, and definitely a lot less synthesized.

If the journey ended with Like a Coffin Chasing a Womb, His Chariot Becomes a Southern Bloodstorm, I would feel utterly stunned, forced to spin this would-be MCD over and over. As it exists, the album goes on a little too long for my taste, the forest scenes beginning to repeat themselves. Yet, on a colder fall day, with a long drive ahead of me, this could become a companion.

Killing Songs :
Like a Coffin Chasing a Womb, His Chariot Becomes a Southern Bloodstorm; The Thunderous Hooves of Two Goats in the Sky
Alex quoted 65 / 100
Other albums by Blood of the Black Owl that we have reviewed:
Blood of the Black Owl - A Banishing Ritual reviewed by Crash and quoted 74 / 100
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