[Reviewed by Iaha Crax]
The cover of the disc shows a painting with a girl hanged from her hands by a rope and attended by three most likely judges/inquisitors questioning her during what seems to be a witch trial. This is the story behind the record as composed and imagined by a Greek artist coursing around under the moniker Algol S. And because it is the Black Plagve label that issued this record, the possibilities of confronting another Bosch-esque darkly splendorous opus are even wider.
Well, the record begins in a sludgy hissing, noise-scattered track called “A Momentary Illusion Of Light & Hope”, that refines itself to the final part by an ambient guitar-driven nostalgia; this should suggest that momentary vision…Once the track ended I entertained an amused reminiscence of past conceptual records written in the same manner. One could never have believed that such an obscure and intricate style would produce many adepts.
The story of the witch is further narrated by a melodramatic song with spoken French lyrics and the usual bass-driven funeral doom hammers. A mutually anticipated dialogue between a demonic male vocal and the broody female recitation continues along the very little changing Khanate-style guitars. This “An Epiphany Written In Blood” goes on dully and unimaginatively until the composer is out of ink.
“Bleak Old Shadows” is a dark ambient track very decently composed of a single brush, almost colorless but condensed and attractive enough.
Perhaps if my mind was not so filled with Melek-Tha’s sound, Hypsiphrone would come out easier into light. Unfortunately these kinds of songs that have a real cinematic attraction, are easily dissolved in the newly grown scene of this kind of projects. After “Her Name Is Upon The Graves Of Those She Slays”, which lost its musical skeleton in an attempt of melodic meditation, “Embrace Of Soul & Flesh” follows a blunt rhythm that goes nowhere.
“Resurgence Of Mors Sexualis” speaks about necrophilia. I did not expect Jorg Buttergeit, Marduk or Atrax Morgue here, although an eclectic combination of genres is the background of this style. The song captures some of the atmosphere of B movies where necrophilia is nothing but zombie soft copulation. On “Cornucopia Saluti” Hypsiphrone touches the mind of the deranged and illustrates the sounding of an asylum in a rainy night. Here and there thunders, drops of rain and scarce shrieking that in a summer day would make you to curse the weather forecast girl who had announced only sunny days. “Worlds Are Wounds Of Desolation” reminds me of the improvised style of Abruptum, but fails deeply in attaining a certain power of authenticity. The same goes with the final track “Into Your Hands I Commit My Spirit” that brings into mind a multitude of ambient scenes, but has nothing to offer.
Personally I esteem every musical attempt in underground genres regardless of the artist, but some records need to reach a certain level before being released by an important label. Don’t you allow wine to decant a little before tasting it?