Mesarthim - Type III (EP)
Atmospheric Black Metal
1 songs (18:40)
Release year: 2016
Reviewed by Goat

Introduced to mysterious Australian duo Mesarthim a few weeks ago by Andy’s review of In Mordor Where the Shadows Are – Homage to Summoning, I was initially curious about the name, but soon grew more interested given the band’s space fascination and general air of Darkspace-esque obscurity surrounding them. The band’s members are identified as dots, past album and EP cover art is all NASA photographs of distant constellations, and their second album was even titled .- -... ... . -. -.-. . (or ‘Absence’ if you don’t speak Morse Code!) Yet this is musically very unlike the harsh buzzing of Darkspace, which is a representation of space as a terrifying, hostile void. Instead, Mesarthim seem to see something brighter out there, and their music is much more based around synths and keyboard melodies, sometimes working in atmospheric black metal riffs, sometimes creating semi-industrial soundscapes, but always making a cohesive whole. You can hear the Summoning influence, but the band are aiming for something almost like a big-budget film score at times, leaving the earthy black metal riffs and shrieks behind and seeking something transcendent...

And indeed, they nearly succeed, although you get the sense that the band are on the cusp on something remarkable and just need space to figure it out. They’re very nearly there though, and Type III is a very good EP. A single eighteen-minute song, it opens with ominous piano and builds to a metallic explosion where darkwave synths and epic riffs co-exist, shades of Arcturus and other early 00s electronic-inspired acts emerging. The beeping ambience around the ten-minute mark is smooth and works well with the metal elements, which fade and return here and there but are clearly meant to support the keyboards rather than the other way around. Even the ending is good, building to sheer noise and closing on unaccompanied Morse Code beeping. There’s almost too much metal here; I’d like to hear less of the harsh vocals and heavy riffing in favour of more atmosphere, but to be fair to the band this is all I’ve heard of their discography – two albums and three other EPs exist, not bad considering Mesarthim are just two years old! Definitely worth your time, you can hear (and buy) this EP with the Bandcamp player below.

Killing Songs :
Type III
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