Behold, another document of extreme metal splendor coming once again from within the gut of the ever so magnificent East Bay Area’s extreme metal/punk underground – further evidence that something truly special is always happening here and that things almost seem to be shrouded in a constant spell of musical and creative ecstasy. Void Omnia are a new atmospheric black metal band from Oakland that feature current and former members of Mutilation Rites, Tombs, Apocryphon, Infinite Waste, Ulthar and many more local and non-local underground acts, and they play some of the most mesmerizing and shape-shifting atmospheric melodic black metal to ever come out of the Bay. With a sound that borrows equally from the cascadian black metal tradition (WITTR, Skagos, Addaura, Agalloch, Velnias), and from the far away, distant and more “exotic” austral hemisphere black metal tradition (namely Woods of Desolation and Encircling Sea), Void Omnia have crafted something of truly soul-shattering intensity – music that has made of sonic vastness, trance-inducing songwriting, and pulverizing buildups an irreplaceable dogma.
Their debut album, Dying Light, far from being a predictable or one-sided listen, also shows subtle nuances of other very particular black metal influences: striations of British melodic black metal in the vein of Fen, Winterfylleth, and Wode for example; and other orbiting sonic debris taken from east-European black metal in the vein of Drudkh and Walknut. What strikes me the most about Void Omnia’s music is the unrelenting and almost hysterical vastness of their songs that build and swell like an otherworldly storm, seemingly aimed at the vaults of heaven in an almost vertical climb toward complete sonic disintegration. Their music is both savagely unrelenting and incredibly intimistic – almost feeling like a dramatic and lonesome ascent into the unknown, a soul journey that will have no return and that will solely lead into glorious and divine annihilation.
The sidereal aspect of their music is in this sense undeniable. There is a constant reach for the beyond in this album. Dying Light‘s artwork may have already given this aspect of the music away with a mere visual queue, but there is so much more of this that unfolds as soon as the music hits you. There is a constant stretching toward and into the unknown in this band’s music, almost as if the band is seeking the ultimate sanctuary of loneliness and hopelessness – a place that can’t be anywhere else but a million light years from the warm carnal reality of mankind here on Earth. And you truly do feel like you are lost in the immense vacuum of space and drifting away into oblivion as Void Omnia’s swarming storms of blast beasts and of cascading incessant black metal riffs shroud you in an immense vortex of stardust and solar winds and pulverize you into oblivion. This whole sideral and otherworldly aspect of their music is something that indissolubly also ties the band to that “cosmic” black metal scene that has bands like Phobonoid, Spectral Lore and Mare Cognitum as main stylistic strongholds, and which further enhances the mysticism and character of this band, expanding the scope of their technical and creative prowess beyond the simple definition of “atmospheric black metal.”