|Band:||A Thousand Sufferings|
As 2016 is almost drawing to a close, we still have some time to go back and rediscover some releases that we might have missed out from 2015 as well. Let's fly to Belgium in order to welcome the debut effort by a quartet that made a clear statement in their name already: A Thousand Sufferings. They have worked on "Burden" throughout 2014, until they found an official release channel in the Russian label Satanath Records.
This was not the first time that the latter crossed paths with Belgian bands in this field, as we also saw on Aristocrazia Webzine with the notable Angakok, although this time it seems the main references are a bit different. The cover artwork — created by an artist duo known as Rotten Fantom — is the result of some sort of mystical trance and an attempt at building a connection between the human world and the natural world (that are ultimately part of the same thing). The grim contrast between the two colors makes a perfect introduction to what we will listen to in the record itself.
The opener is an instrumental track created by the Swedish composer Simon Kölle (it wasn't the first time for him to work on metal-oriented projects), lifting the curtain on the triptych of songs constituting "Burden". In "Red Is Redemption (Bloodletting)" we can already notice two aspects: first of all, A Thousand Sufferings love titles with sub-titles in brackets, but especially they must have listened to a lot of Thomas G. Fischer's latest works as Celtic Frost and with Triptykon, so much so that they seem to have come up with a personal version of that style.
The three tracks are basically ten-minute long tortures, where the relatively rare guitar leads appear to be the only possible connection to something tangible, as everything around collapses and PJ's demonic voice announces the end of the world in "Blue Is… (Remembering Treasures)". All riffs are very heavy and contribute to strengthening the general feeling of claustrophobia of this record, although the latter quite surprisingly finishes after "just" three full songs and maybe the quartet could have added something else as well, perhaps in between tracks.
Nevertheless, the album does not feel incomplete and it is a notable release, especially for people who enjoy this particular branch of doom metal, or even if you simply want to keep on exploring this emerging troubled face of Belgium's metal music. If the general quality of the records coming out of there stays this solid, this is perfectly fine for us.