冬霾 (Winter Mirage) – 葬尸湖 (Zuriaake)

The latest EP from 葬尸湖 (Zuriaake) will leave listeners thrilled to be solemn–for a spell.

Zuriaake, a Chinese black metal project, coats its sound in the thickness of atmosphere and the painful harshness of sharp riffs. Zuriaake began crafting its musical presence in the mid-2000s, releasing the full-length, 弈秋 (Afterimage of Autumn) in 2007; the EP, 冬霾 (Winter Mirage) announced itself last year. With only two tracks, Winter Mirage still manages to dump an adequate amount of sour bliss within its black metal foundation.

While waiting for screaming vocals to appear on “Winter Mirage,” listeners may be beckoned by a rather bitter-sounding riff atop distant instrumentation. The piece progresses with sleepy percussion, padding a repetitive, obscure melody. On “Valley of Loneness,” bitterness does not necessarily puncture the song; it is more comparable to nothingness. As opposed to the first track, more attitudinal drumming is stated, but it supports the subdued nature of the tune.

The artwork for Winter Mirage/Pestproductions.bandcamp.com

Winter Mirage is summed up as an EP that is comfortable in its black metal direction. The recording is not unimpressive, as it seems to deliberately force distant guitar echoes. Giving the songs another appeal is that Zuriaake throws in some other tones to emphasize the dismal atmosphere. Those familiar with extreme metal may deem this as another effort that does not depart from the black metal framework; others may be content with solidarity and gloom that it offers. However, two notions are apparent: After delving into the sound of Winter Mirage, one may either be left excitingly dazed or mysteriously grim.

“Winter Mirage”/Courtesy: YouTube

“Valley of Loneness”/Courtesy: YouTube
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