2017 could be the year of funeral doom if only people had the patience. Six months in this anno satanae and we have three masterpieces of the genre; Fuoco Fatuo’s Backwater
, Loss’ Horizonless
and now Funeralium
‘s Of Throes and Blight
. It all comes down to how you like your funeral doom – or whether you have the time, the stamina and the taste for it, really. Fuoco Fatuo’s latest is a masterpiece of layering, gorgeous when you shut your eyes and concentrate. Too bad the artwork gets lost presenting texture over detail. Loss on the other hand, have dealt a pretty card. Like its gorgeous cover, their present take on doom has bright spots, moments of light and the incandescent idea that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
Not Funeralium. Of Throes and Blight is the work of miserable people. It is blunt and in your face. Its riffs are tacit and dry. And its pace may be a challenge even to the most suicidal. Funeralium’s four track recording has been released on CD by Japan’s Weird Truth Productions and has now seen its fate via a double tape edition from Caligari Records. This latest edition features artwork from Peruvian deviant Graficos de Ultratumba and is one piece broken into two jcards. A rare treat for those addicted to the format. Of Throes and Blight is a challenge and you better beware grow some balls or say away. First track “Slowly We Crawl Towards Crumbs” features the kind of riff that goes up and down.
It is simple and to the point. There isn’t much on the way of technique, just pure negativity alternated with guttural growls and human screams. Second track “Spit at My Face, I Will Pluck Your Tongue Out” is more articulate, but the negativity is palpable. Tortured doesn’t begin to describe the proceedings; speed this riff up, add a bitching wah wah and you could be talking about Rose Above level of commerciality.
Instead, what you get is the stuff parents regret; a bleak and simple riff that goes up and then it spirals down and twists to no end. It is noise, it can be obnoxious, it is the exact opposite of everything everyone you love listens to and halfway through deconstructs with feedback playing a role and dementia taking a lead. As it spirals down to a horrible end Funeralium give a lesson in brutality, lashing out and bashing out, hammering riffs and drumming up a storm. It is funeral doom at its finest. The second tape starts off with “Vermin,” a single-minded cluster of repetition and it ends with “Vanishing Once and for All,” a gruelling marathon of sleepy riffs and paused battering. It follows through with the promise of delivering full negativity. And in this bleak year of usual destruction it may just be what all negative doom lovers need.