Wednesday, September 2, 2015

One Master - Live In The Castle Of Quiet

One Master's Live In The Castle Of Quiet is a fascinating artifact providing evidence of two very select groups in the northeast. The first, and most obvious, is the close-knit Massachusetts black metal scene which is quite expansive with much incestuation. The second is a much less known, yet very important, WFMU audience which is North Jersey and New York specific (other than those that stream online, of course). Since college I have tuned in to listen to William Berger's My Castle Of Quiet radio show - some may have seen the name appear on this blog at times as well every often - and One Master's live set from his April, 25th 2013 show offers insight to the interests and musical direction of Mr. Bergers show.

The tape starts with Berger's coaxing voice. One Master initiate the live set with "The Destroyer Pts. I and II," which engage the listener with pretty clear Eastern European black metal styling.  After the miasma that is the opening track, "A Cursed and Dismal Mind" offers a slower discordant doomy intro with evil guitar fragments tacked on before cutting it's life line and falling into chaos. "Intolerance" crusts right on along like a barnacled speed boat sitting low in the water churning onward fastidiously, an expected malevolence drifting across the sound plane, which we've been accustomed to and expect even by this short point along. The highlight of the tape itself is the memorable marching series of riffs which flanks the introductory cannonade. This section is decidedly Norwegian in extrapolation. A comfortable muddiness and satinesque production culminates with "Infernal Silence," an initially fast and then slower moody piece.

Live In The Castle Of Quiet is a good starting point, honestly, with regards to One Master. The material here will surely entice me to explore the band's three full lengths. With one track being from their sophomore effort, The Quiet Eye Of Eternity, and the other three having been recently released on this year's Reclusive Blasphemy, both portions of the band's earlier and more recent material is present, and the consistency supports the proposition. Both albums - and the debut, Forsaking A Dead World, are available through Eternal Death. More simply than being a good gateway to the band, One Master present to us once more a gem of black metal which emphasizes the importance that atypical recordings such as live material, radio spots, demos, and whatever other sorts of clever imagined concoctions have as fan-base building devices. A great band is able to utilize multiple canvases for their creations. For One Master, this live tape is not a canvas wasted. Get it from No Visible Scars.

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