Mare Cognitum / Spectral Lore - Wanderers: Astrology of the Nine
Entropic Recordings
Atmospheric Black Metal
10 songs (115' 11")
Release year: 2020
Reviewed by Andy

After doing a split album in 2013, Mare Cognitum's indefatiguable Jacob Buczarski and Spectral Lore's Ayloss have produced an LP -- and an ambitious one. No one can accuse either of keeping their tracks short and radio-friendly, and here they exercise their talents to the fullest in an concept album of the solar system, with each track representing a planet (Pluto gets two).

Spectral Lore takes on Mercury for the first track, a haze of layered tremolo picking, sharp and treble until it builds up to a dominating melody; Mare Cognitum then tackles Mars, beginning with chunky riffing that invokes death metal more than the trademark orchestral melodies Buczarski is best known for, but towards the end, the ghostly melody coalesces up out of the chaos beneath. The Earth track, one of my favorites, is a solemn hymn with a beat that only speeds up towards the end of the track, led along by indulgent lead guitar work.

As we pass on to the two largest gas giants and things get slower and doomier for them; Mare Cognitum gives Neptune the high-speed treatment, clear and melodic in his unique style, while Spectral Lore's impressions of Uranus are hazy blends of riffing with clean portions in between. Both musicians collaborate on Pluto, with the first track being keyboard ambient with no hint of black metal, and the second a departure from both band's guitar-driven sound. To a mechanized beat that would be at home on the last two Summoning albums, a slow melody winds out towards the listener; halfway through, the guitars take over and begin thrashing, fading out into the vastness of space beyond.

I hadn't gotten to hear the original collaboration between these two bands, but in terms of quality, the Spectral Lore tracks are very close, if not equal, to the Mare Cognitum ones. In addition to the sound they're known for, the two bands try out plenty of new ideas, making Wanderers definitely worth a purchase.


Killing Songs :
Earth (The Mother), Neptune (The Mystic), Pluto (The Gatekeeper Part II: The Astral Bridge)
Andy quoted 85 / 100
0 readers voted
You did not vote yet.
Vote now

There are 0 replies to this review. Last one on Tue Mar 24, 2020 7:52 am
View and Post comments