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4.46 | 3 ratings | 1 review
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Album · 2017


1. Ebne Graun (46:23)

Total Time 46:23


- Martin Lang / Guitars, Keyboards, Percussion
- Euer Gnaden / Bass
- Flesh of L. / Vocals

About this release

Format: CD
Label: I, Voidhanger Records
Release date: February 3rd, 2017

Thanks to adg211288 for the addition


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Consisting of just a single track running for over forty-five minutes, Ebne Graun (2017) is the eighth full-length album release by German depressive black metal act Todesstoß. Formerly the one man project of founder Martin Lang, Ebne Graun is more of a band effort thanks to the contributions from newer members Euer Gnaden (bass) and Flesh of L. (vocals), leaving Lang to handle the guitars, keyboards and percussion in the group. It's the same line-up who recorded the previous album Hirngemeer (2015).

On Ebne Graun the music performed by Todesstoß sits somewhere between depressive black metal and funeral doom metal and even ambient/dungeon synth type stuff such as that used in the intro of the track, where the music is combined with the sound of rattling chains and ghostly sorrowful wails that conjure up image of a dark, dank, medieval dungeon from which there is no escape. At other times the synth parts can even sound folksy, but of course not in a happy way. This dungeon has no windows, so there are no rays of light to offer even of a glimmer of hope.

And that's just the feeling the album/song gives between it even gets in any way metallic. As the metal begins to emerge it's more in the slow, funeral doom metal kind of dirge and continues to blend it the ideas from the previous section. It's all been done in such a way that it's not hard to realise that Ebne Graun isn't all about being dark and dreary although this feeling can never be far from your mind, thanks in no small part to the vocals of Flesh of L. which range between despairing and mournful cleans to tortured and aggressive growls. What it also shows itself to be though is quite intricate. I don't mean that the band is throwing in excessive technical work or progressive elements, but the small details that made the music interesting and make it something more than a dirge – the kind of thing that could even give an album such as this appeal to those listeners who usually avoid this kind of thing, perhaps for considering themselves a happy person. One thing that is often prominent in the mix even when the song moves forward again into a bit faster and more furious sounding black metal section, is the bass of Euer Gnaden. The bass lines played are another layer of music onto themselves here.

Counting myself as one of those listeners who considered himself a reasonably happy individual I would class myself as someone who typically avoids depressive black metal acts. The whole idea of the genre just doesn't usually appeal to me in the least. I decided to give this one a go based on the track record of the label it is released on, that being I, Voidhanger Records who have put out some of my favourite black metal releases such as Spectral Lore's III (2014), Mare Cognitum's Phobos Monolith (2014) and Midnight Odyssey's Shards of Silver Fade (2015) but honestly wasn't expecting to like it this much as my previous experiments with the genre did not go so well. Which is why I hope it gives weight when I say that Ebne Graun is an excellent album from Todesstoß. They've used the long duration of the track well and even after half an hour in can still throw in a section that takes you off guard. Recommend to those who like the strange and unique.

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