Black Shape of Nexus, or, in abbreviated form, B-SON, released their third full-length back in April. The title of the album is Negative Black, which is not a total misnomer, as the German band treats its listeners to over an hour of dark and droning, slow and introspective sludge music.
Admittedly, the album is somewhat of a challenge to digest – event for seasoned doom metal fans, because of B-SON's experiments with noise and song lengths. Drawing on noise rock as an inspiration, the all of the songs feature feedback noise, serving both as a generator of atmosphere, as in the instrumental "RMS" or as a prominent aspect of the overall sound as in "Illinois". To this you can add a heavily distorted bass and heavily distorted harsh vocals. The songs are considerably long, with "Neg.Black" clocking in at 22 minutes ("10000 µF" follows with almost 20 minutes, and "14d" with 11 minutes – the rest of the songs have an average length of about 6:45 minutes). So imagine 6:45 minutes to 22 minutes of pure sludgy doom and droning noise. This will turn fans of such music totally on, and scare the living poop out of mainstream people.
Amidst all the noise and darkness, one of the assets – I think – of B-SON's latest album is that they make use of a number of tangible riffs, many of which are not super slow and doomy, but more of a stomping and strangely groovy type. Doom fans, however, will be happy to know that there are, of course, plenty of well defined riffs that are truly doomy and crushing, as for instance in the main riff of "14d". Thus there is more substance to the tracks on Negative Black than just droning notes and noise, which I personally appreciate. Then again, I cannot help to totally loving the really slow and droning figures in "Neg.Black" which take the music to the point of nearly disintegrating.
I rarely listen to this kind of music, but I can definitely tell that B-SON have something very interesting going on, and Negative Black is well worth exploring. Fans of noise rock and drone metal will, of course, love all aspects of this album, while fans of progressive music and metal might be interested to give the album a listen just to check out the music and the dark sounds that B-SON so masterfully create. Lady GaGa fans and other mainstream zombies should stay far away from this sludge-bomb though.
3. 60 WV
4. 10000 µF