Many people hold many things as precious in this wonderful floating rock we call Earth. Some value money over all else. To others, power is the key to happiness. Love is also a beautiful, unifying force in this cesspool of a world. The one thing we all can agree on and wish we could hoard, is time. Time is precious. Time is fleeting. Some people waste it wantonly. Others hold it near and dear to their hearts. Having lost several people (and pets) who were close to me this year alone, I value my time highly. So when a one-man black metal band from Australia decides to put out an eighty-minute long black metal record, it better damn well hold my attention and captivate me. Moon, who also has the distinction of joining the elite in bands with horrible names for search engines, released such a beast in Render of the Veils, mainman Miasmyr’s fourth full-length. How otherworldly is it?

To be fair, it starts off promisingly enough. “Immolation Euphoria” whooshes in with some rather unsettling keyboard sounds, bringing in an otherworldy aura that bands like Darkspace have nailed time and again. It’s also effective at just over a minute and a half in length. And then “Mordraniht” peters out at launch with a trebly, poorly-mixed guitar “melody,” horribly off-time drums, and no atmosphere to speak of. I do, however, want to find out what cavern Miasmyr’s howling from, because it sounds spacious as shit. I could easily fit all of my musical equipment, gaming systems, the Grymmmobile (a beat-up 2003 Pontiac Sunfire with fuzzy dice in the rearview mirror and a souped-up stereo system that seems to only play ABBA), and my army of cats. Otherwise, this didn’t hold my attention at all.

I’ll admit right here and now that I signed up for this review because the promo sheet listed this as “space metal,” and I thought, “well, this could be like a Darkspace-ish journey.” What I got was Xasthur worship, only not as well-played. This is sonically black teflon: nigh-impenetrable and nothing sticks, even after repeated listens. Speaking of which, of the eleven songs, only five are under the seven-minute mark. To pull something like that off, you need to engage the listener somehow, and I can safely say, after listening to it every day for a week straight, nothing grabs the listener at all. It howls (“Mordraniht”), whooshes (“As Stars Merge With Ice”), and it sometimes sounds very skippy (“Mirror of Black Souls”), but none of it is memorable.

Moon Render the Veils 02

The mix is part of the problem. The guitars are too far back, the keyboards are up too high, and vocals are everywhere (I want that cave so bad). The drums are sloppily played, with “Mordraniht” and “Mirror of Black Souls” being key offenders, where the kick drum seems to be tripping over itself. But the biggest problems are the actual songwriting and the sheer length of it all. 80 minutes of a couple of notes and riffs endlessly repeated with loud swooshing keyboards has about as much appeal as listening to this again does.

Besides picturing a new abode worthy of my Hoarding: Buried Alive fantasies, Render of the Veils is an exercise in patience in which you don’t need to partake. If you want to be thrown into the outer reaches of the void, reach for Darkspace instead. Otherwise, go watch a classic MST3K episode. That’s 80 minutes better spent.


Rating: 1.0/5.0
DR: 8 | Format Reviewed: 256 kbps mp3
Label: Moribund Records
Websites: moonaus.bandcamp.com | facebook.com/moon
Releases Worldwide: September 18th, 2015

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  • Pedro Morini Mietto

    As a non-native english speaker, I have to ask: how ofter do you use the word “cesspool”? I’ve never seen that before.

    • Carlos Marrickvillian

      ha good question … It’s like a bottle of fine wine or aged single malt… a top shelf insult, used selectively. Most commonly found in references to groups of politicians or corporate lobbyists.

      • Hulksteraus

        I think the best top shelf insult for politicians and corporate lobbyists has to be “Unrepresentative Swill”. That has such a nice ring to it. Cesspool is definitely up there though.

    • Grymm

      Too often, I’m afraid.

      • Carlos Marrickvillian

        probably not often enough!

        • [not a Dr] Gonzalo Salazar

          Only as often as necessary?
          (I’m a fervent defender of the Middle Ground Fallacy)

          • Dr. Scorpion

            Whenever things seem Grymm enough.

        • Hulksteraus

          “Cess, there’s a pool out the back!!”

          • Carlos Marrickvillian

            Lol

    • Doomdeathrosh

      As a non-native english speaker, I can tell the word sounds very icky!

  • Matthew

    Will AMG be reviewing the new Mgła album?

    • Pimpolho

      I hope so, i love it

    • Luke_22

      I was listening to the stream last night, it sounds incredible. However, as far as I can tell we haven’t received a promo for it.

      • Matthew

        Do you only review albums you get promos for?

        • That’s the general policy. In some instances we will review something we didn’t get if it seems worthy or important.

  • end720

    He re-released his first demo at the start of the year, and I’ve actually been quite enjoying it. Comparing it to this however, it may actually be better produced.

  • PFC

    That’s a lovely accent – New Jersey?
    Austria.
    Austria!? Well, then. G’day mate! Let’s put another shrimp on the barbie!

    • Hulksteraus

      Props!! Got a mate in Austria that I have a laugh with because he has that exact problem :)

      • PFC

        Well, AMG doesn’t get the joke, apparently :)

  • Doomdeathrosh

    Y’know: the minute i read “Australian Black Metal”, I was in glee. And then the rest of the review had me sinking further and further.
    And dare I say the Orb is back!

  • Diabolus_in_Muzaka

    Your hyperlink game is on point, Grymm. Thanks for saving us all 80 minutes! One could use that time to listen to Reign in Blood twice and then make and eat a great club sandwich. 80 minutes could also be used to listen to all of Xasthur’s worthwhile material and then with the time left over from that listen to 80 minutes of Exodus or something.

    • Pimpolho

      Shots fired! I actually like Xasthur, i will blame your hate on summer.

  • sir_c

    i think he forgot to paint the corpse. why else would it be faced backwards?

    • Grymm

      I love the pic supplied with the promo. I just picture the evil faces he’s making towards that poor, defenseless tree.

      “I’m gonna kill you, shtupid tree.”

  • hubcapiv

    I kind of admire the optimism that makes someone say, “You know what this world needs? Another one-man black metal project!”

    • AlphaBetaFoxface

      I would totally wear “You know what this world needs? Another one-man black metal project!” on a shirt. Or even a headband for optimal optimism punishment. I think you are onto something

      • Grymm

        I would wear the shit out of that shirt, too.

  • Hulksteraus

    Man, I feel for you for having had to listen to 80 minutes of “One-Man Black Metal”. I could sell you a Time Machine if you wish to get that 80 minutes back.