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CHRYST is an Austrian Avant/Black Prog Metal project from Christof NIEDERWIESER, previously known as band leader for Avant Metal bands KOROVA in the 90′s and KOROVAKILL from 2000 onwards, and also active as chief editor of the webzine

CHRYST's "Phantasmachronica" is a solo work, a 47 minute piece of continuous music that recalls EDGE OF SANITY's "Crimson", not only for being a one-man 40-plus minute opus, but also in sound and atmosphere and for hitting that small spot where experimentation meets accessibility. While musically similar to previous projects, "Phantasmachronica" is more cohesive and mature, less industrial and more prog oriented; next to the alterations between melodic and brutal sections, CHRYST also delves into Avant territories with a penchant for theatricalities and humor. NIEDERWIESER's gloomy and slightly 'off' vocals recall VIRUS and VED BEUNS ENDE.

CHRYST is a promising new project that seemlessly integrates doom, death, symphonic, avant and black metal.
Thanks to time signature for the addition and Time Signature, bonnek for the updates

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CHRYST PhantasmaChronica album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Avant-garde Metal 2011

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CHRYST Reviews

CHRYST PhantasmaChronica

Album · 2011 · Avant-garde Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Time Signature
I are you...

Genre: avant-garde deconstructionist postmodern metal

Take a look at the cover artwork for this release. It depicts Jesus Christ crucified on a modern wind turbine on top of a Martian-red hill against a clear blue sky. If you can get past the (obviously intended) wonderfully post-modern blasphemy of it all, your first thought might be "that's weird, but interesting". Now, some of the other artwork connected with this album depicts a man with clouds superimposed as a beard upon his face, Jesus crucified on a power pylon, a fish floating in the sky and gear discs emanating from an hourglass towards a floating clock disc in the sky. Again, your first thought is probably "weird, but interesting".

And "weird, but interesting" as perhaps the predicate that describes Chryst's post-modern avant-garde metal album "PhantasmaChronica" the best.

Drawing on main man Christof Niederwieser's background in avant-garde black metal act KorovaKill, Chryst does have strong leanings towards black metal on this release, and several black metal aesthetics pop up, such as the use of black metal shrieks and an emphasis on repetition that characterizes some of the tracks. But "PhantasmaChronica" goes far beyond the already very fuzzy demarcations of black metal with its post-modern and definitely deconstructionist approach to genre within the metal universe. The music is generally quite dark and psychedelic and thus in stark contrast with the cover artwork of the album, and in addition to the black metal elements, the listener is treated to weird - at time humorous - as in the bizarrely epic 'I Are You' (see, even the rules of grammar are deconstructed), or mellow and quite melodic passages, as in 'Metatoprolis', and creepy sound effects (such as the chaotic use of samples of babies crying in 'Templum Tempus'.

Moreover, there is plenty of experimentation with dissonance, spaceyness, epic soundscapes, tempos, minimalism, lushness, moods, electronica elements, sternness, humor and so on. And, as if to underline the main lyrical theme of the illusion of time and space, the opening track is sped up and slowed down towards the end - reflecting that Chryst is a project where even the recording technology itself may be subject to experimentation.

Yes, "PhantasmaChronica" is weird, but interesting. It is at times very tense, unsettling and disturbing, and at other times mellow, pleasurable and even uplifting and at all times avant-garde and challenging. It's one of those releases you listen to in order to explore it as an integrated piece of art.

(review originally posted at

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