The world's a negative place, & that's the plane truth. Chortle. Stained Glass Revelations takes the formula of Et In Saecula Saeculorum & enriches its potent orthodox hex, creating a work that, if equal in midnight headphoning efficacy, exceeds in catacomb depth.
A macrocosmic spiral rattle, The Fall is falling, high on an organ hit, the bells, the bells, a gothy Bathory (the late Quorthon's birthday today, spin Blood Fire Death you bastards) trudge n' tumble before you're slapped & stabbed wide awake. Sure, Lamentations and Ashes black metalizes with classic panache, but look, pal, with a clarity Possessed by few. The murk is never the static moss & sediment but the acrid, turbulent gusts above, a gritty, tactile obscurantism often shunned &/or poorly plundered by this genre. One moment toes tap, the next they're grist for Hades' mill, check out that doom groove, accelerate, O roller coaster of hate. Hell's kitchen licks licked the greasy floor to catalyze this bit, voiceless opera 'til, I swear, a half-life measure of an Orbison fret ring. You didn't hear wrong, Angels of Veiled Bone, but you've only time to hear the echo quickly smothered in a relentless fusillade of galloping, Teutonic stop/starts.
The Third Hour, carefully excised soundtrack innards from a long lost Expressionist flick, marks the archaic majesty of The One and the Many, whose flagstone riff carries mad alchemist rants aloft, nearly lost in the cavernous architecture, defiant. A quick wisp of that breezy Charnel Spirit & I swear, All Souls is Ligeia's labyrinth of choice if she were a metalhead & not also a fictional character. Tragedians, you're conquered, for the reaper waits at summer's end. Subtle pall's the key, hitting where the riffs ain't. Purgatory's all gloom & tomb, but there's wizardry in The Number of the Word, sentiment hidden in between the lattice of text & sound, how about that finalé, fooled you, boom. Bach's brought in for Stained Glass Reflections' spooky church worship whilst the title track spills liquid ascension over descending lines, pick up this, did you hear that, over & again till the vintage climax. Remember when bands knocked the edifice down like that?
Busy without being a hive, beautiful without being beautiful, Negative Plane's filled an entire dimension with acres of discernible yet inscrutable sorcery à la early Mercyful Fate, a relentless dyad waiting to be explored, transporting the listener to somewhere better. Sure, better's a vision of the grave & all that jazz, but that's the point & if it's not, then what the hell are you doing here? Go play in the sun.