Sahrana - Journey to the Far Side of the Sun

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Band Sahrana
Album Journey to the Far Side of the Sun
Country Denmark
Genre Black Metal, Drone, Noise
Release date (album) 2015
Release date (review) 2015/09/16


Pink Floyd had once a release with the title “Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun”. As we have been there – close, around and in the vicinity – it may appropriate to venture a little bit further, even though, thanks to physics and thanks to space, it will be an explored part of our solar system as well. This has to do with the rotation of the innermost of our system as well as the amount of probes that had been launched over time and since the beginning of the space era. So, why should we go there. Of course someone with a deep grudge towards man, civilization and everything would definitely seek a spot farthest away from any other being. Misanthropy brought to extreme … maybe.

Judging from the dynamics and the style of the music, the overall intent appears to be rather drastic and in need of immediate compensation. Sahrana leave no doubt about what type of music they prefer and how they like to see it expressed. Black metal with a good portion of drone woven into it and with a distinct focus on dynamics. The band does not offer some moments to catch some air, maybe because there is no need to breathe in a space, as there is no air to begin with. Just keep steady and hold tight – it will all be over at some point. In the meantime though, enjoy the trip while you can. A general refusal or inability to fill the lungs again could lead to some surprising side-effects though.

Intensive is what comes to mind in terms of the music and its expression. It is consistency brought to extreme and on a scale does not have to work on every release and in every concept. Akin to the vastness and emptiness of space the hectic trip leaves no time for pleasantries and contemplation. To get away and to reach a save haven, a place to breathe open and free again, is what everything appears to be heading towards. And the drums set the pace. Their strange rolling sound sets the pace. They create a sense of anticipation and of progression. Sadly and this may have to do with the basic setting of this release, their production leaves something to be wanted and they have been put too far in the background and have to struggle with the guitars to get some small sparks of attention. In order words … turn up the fucking volume.

Yes, those guitars … those dense walls of guitars. They make up a good portion of the release, but do not entirely drown the other elements. Furthermore, they do not even appear in this massive kind of way from the beginning to the end. At times they are nothing more than a noise texture, whose composition reminds on what can be discovered in the so-called “space ambient” genre and might be associated with the vastness as well as the emptiness of space. Nevertheless, it is astounding what the band is actually presenting on this release. This is no mere demo demo of a new black metal project, thrown out by someone locked up in a bed-room or by a poor guying torment a guitar – as well as a computer/cat/neighbour/etc. The Danish band has brought quite some space between them and this level.

This release breathes the air of not considering the effects and breaking loose. “Thou” is just a blast and an intense bombardment of sounds, dynamics and of noise. One barrage after another rains down on the listener once the bands has gone started, and the second track “We went too far” is more of the same but different at the same time. This has to do with the sound and its positive effects on the overall impression. More time appears to have been invested in the getting things right here and this has helped the drums to some extend, not to mention the bass-guitar. All of the facets come with more power and of course this second track leaves a more positive impression than the opener.

Music that simply lashes forward and does appear to care for the effects, is what can found on this cassette. Two tracks with each a length close to ten minutes are delivered with it. Whether or not someone would be able to enjoy this intense and extreme performance has definitely to do with preferences in terms of sound and style. Those extreme black metal screams that make up a good portion of the music, those dense layers of guitars and the emphasis on the drone genre might not be something everyone will be fascinated by. It may be interesting to see or rather experience this live and on stage, because with some additional visual this could be an intense experience.