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Mesmur : Terrene

Mesmur deliver a third slice of engrossing Funeral Death/Doom that is a welcome addition to any collection

Mesmur is an international four-piece formed in 2013 that have thus far released three full-lengths. Theirs is a highly engaging style of Funeral Doom that uses a broad approach to pull the listener in under its spell. Their latest, ‘Terrene’, sees the band further refine their skill and along the way, engage in a highly exploratory journey to the deepest cavernous depths of oblivion.

‘Terra Ishtar’ opens things up with a soft beginning, an eerie tranquility is established to set the mood. With a methodical procession, the melodic idea is developed with a blend of giant guitar chords, ultra-low bass, and keyboards that add that ornamental dressing that really brings out the atmosphere with a wide selection of synth sounds. In typical Funeral Doom fashion, there is no rush but rather, ideas seem to coalesce through a frugal process of layering. Apart from the Death Doom vocals, though, it is a highly melodic piece with a certain inherent seduction that endears itself to one’s emotion with a somber, plaintive wash of feeling. The lead parts toward the end are reminiscent of the heyday of Anathema, particularly ’The Silent Enigma’ and ’Eternity’ era with an angelic weeping sound. Altogether, it is an entrancing affair, one that does not fail to suck the listener in to be transported to another realm, one of ethereal curiosity and wonder.

‘Babylon’ follows much of the same course, though the song manages to have a much heavier sway. Listening in the background is simply not an option as it manages to grip one’s attention more like a pleasant fixation, though, than an incessant nagging. There is one lick the guitar player uses toward the end of the main progression that really sums things up perfectly shifting directions for a brief moment. It comes down to that unending argument of finding the beauty in darkness, that one ray of light shining through a window on to someone consumed by the toil of this world. That has always been the most poignant allure of this style of music, the ability to bring about a deeper understanding of grief, suffering, betrayal through contrasting colors and textures.

Through the course of the album, the band manages to conjure a heady brew, and the farther along one goes, the more intoxicating it becomes. Everything is done for the primacy of the song from rampant double bass contrasted with plummeting, dirge-filled riffs to a very successful use of textural guitar. The keyboards are not overbearing but rather help to expand the idea at hand. Also, of note is the use of violin and in the case of the third track, ‘Eschaton,’ multiple violin tracks are employed which provide a truly regal appeal invoking classic My Dying Bride.

The production is what truly allows the music to shine. The guitar sound is both powerfully engaging with a deeply down-tuned approach, but it still retains its particularly metallic stance. In other words, there is not an over reliance on vintage sounding fuzz or anything of that sort – just a really low Death Doom tone. When the guitar ventures into lead territory for brief moments, there is ample clarity with a strong, meaty, mid-range-heavy swell. The bass powerfully locks in with the guitar though at times it allows its presence to be more forcefully known and those few walking lines scattered here and there truly do complement the song structure perfectly.

Overall, ‘Terrene’ is an engrossing near-hour worth of material. While one may be tempted to let it play in the background while performing other tasks, it will soon become apparent that its mesmerizing, hypnotic lock is all too affecting. Any fan of the Funeral Doom genre will find this to be a welcome, if not necessary addition to their collection.

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Reviewer's rating: 8/10


Tracklist :
1. Terra Ishtar
2. Babylon
3. Eschaton
4. Caverns of Edimmu

Duration : Approx. 55 minutes

Visit the Mesmur bandpage.

Reviewed on 2020-04-17 by Chris Hawkins
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