Eskapism - Reminiscence (EP)
Archaic Sound
Black Metal
4 songs (31:52)
Release year: 2020
Official Bandcamp, Archaic Sound
Reviewed by Goat

We all need a little Eskapism from time to time, and these Ukrainians seek to deliver with their brand of atmospheric music. Featuring members of various other acts, notably Kroda guitarist Zymobor, the band have only been active since 2015 but have already released two albums, and latest EP Reminiscence is a solid slice of their style. It's more aggressive than you'd expect for atmospheric black metal, riff-driven and full of snarled vocals, yet the backing twinkly keyboards add a subtle dreaminess to proceedings. Eleven minute opener A Cry Into Oblivion begins with dramatic riffs and growls, not a million miles away from countrymen such as Drudkh (always fated to be the touchstone, of course) but touching at early Enslaved, too. It builds well over the course of its running time, achieving hypnotic qualities quickly, unspoiled by a brief spoken word interlude and later stormy violence, ending in rather beautiful soloing - definitely the highlight of the EP.

The following title track feels like an afterthought in comparison although is a perfectly decent track, more complex backing keyboards giving it a sparklier feel alongside the more flamboyant riffing. Whisper of Ancient Times is a six-minute synth piece, and, well, if you enjoy those you'll like this, although it is a little dull! The EP closes with a cover of Kampfar's Mylder, which is perfectly adequate, more aggressive and a little catchier. All in all, nothing too out of the ordinary, but Eskapism is a name worth remembering if you enjoy the Eastern European style of black metal.

Killing Songs :
A Cry Into Oblivion, Mylder
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