Celestial – Desperate North (CD)

Three-fourths of an hour of music await the listener of “Desperate North”. This ample amount of time means that Celestial can set the stage for large things, devoting the entirety of tracks like “Into This Earth of Shallow Intent” purely to set the mood for everything that ultimately follows. One just hears the tension level rise as Celestial works in repetitious ways, in the style of a more metal Vangelis. The atmospheric metal of Celestial continues with “Haunting Cries Beneath The Late Where Are Queen Once Waited, a nearing nine minute track that uses cries and animal noises to really create a distinct sound for Celestial.

This is not the type of music that moves from sedate to brutal in just few minutes, but something that is like the best described fantasy book. The action may get a little fast at times, but this is not the goal of Celestial. Rather, the goal of Celestial is to tell the story in each and every composition on “Desperate North”. There are some questionable arrangements; the inclusion of drum hits that are essentially done the same way during the middle section of “Haunting Cries” ostensibly has the desire of linking together disparate sections of the track, but in reality only succeeds in bothering the listener.

Owing much to the cohesion of this disc, this same style of drumming is continued in “Lamentations in the Citadel of God”. There seems to be a little more in the range of differentiation in these drum hits, coupled with more happening in the track to distract listeners for what is something that can be construed as a weakness on Celestial’s end. Aside from this style of drum hit, the only thing that is shown to be a common thread through a great deal of the tracks on “Desperate North” is something atmospheric in the weather; on both “Lamentations” and “Thule”, the rainy sound of Celestial is a visual cue for listeners. Never mind the fact the band is talent enough to realistically approximate weather, but this is an essential development on an album that has nothing in the way of vocals to speak of. The story ends three-fourths of an hour after it starts, and Celestial creates an atmospheric metal album that rivals acts like Mortiis for dominance in the field. If the band can vary their drumming style on the tracks here, there will be little that individuals can find fault with.

Top Track: Desolate Worth

Rating: 5.9/10

Celestial – Desperate North / 2006 Bindrune / 8 Tracks / http://www.myspace.com/ourcelestialmusic / http://www.crionicmind.org/bindrune / Reviewed 20 April 2006

[JMcQ]

1 thought on “Celestial – Desperate North (CD)”

  1. Okay, first: The artist is not “Celestial.” It’s CELESTIIAL. Two i’s.

    And the album is not called “Desperate North.” It’s called “Desolate North.” And there is no track called “Desolate Worth.”

    Fail, fail, fail.

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