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Mournful Congregation: The Incubus of Karma

"Scripture of Exaltation and Punishment," the fifth track on this album is available to stream on YouTube and Bandcamp. I recommend checking it out, especially if you aren't sure you like funeral doom. If you do like funeral doom, then this is definitely something you'll want to hear. Mournful Congregation is an excellent band and this album cements their reputation even more.

It's hard to believe that Mournful Congregation has been making music for twenty-five years already. On this album, their fifth, they give listeners one hour and twenty minutes worth of new material. Things begin with a short opening, "The Indwelling Ascent," that welcomes the listener with some bright melodic passages. The rest of the album has such sold moments, but they also add a thicker layer of doom and funeral doom. The opening riff to "Whispering Spiritscapes" sets the tone perfectly. If this album were a horror movie, critics would call it "slow burn." That label fits this music because things move very slowly, gathering weight and power with every beat. There are surprises here and there, but this album is less interested in sudden twists than it is the development of ideas.

Mournful Congregation is really good at creating long songs that are never dull. Long songs can be risky in the wrong hands, but these guys know how to keep things developing in ways that hold the attention. For me, one of the coolest moments was when the vocals enter the second track about three minutes into things. That moment came as a surprise, especially since they blended with everything so well that they felt natural. Much of the album is like that. Things weave together smoothly and naturally in ways that make the whole thing sad, heavy, and beautiful.

My favorite tracks were "The Indwelling Ascent," mostly because I liked the repeated melodic lines and "Scripture of Exaltation and Punishment." I also really liked "Whispering Spiritscapes" and "The Rubaiyat."

This is an excellent album from a band that is only getting better. Highly recommended.

Track Listing:
1. The Indwelling Ascent
2. Whispering Spiritscapes
3. The Rubaiyat
4. The Incubus of Karma
5. Scripture of Exaltation and Punishment
mournful_congregation_incubus_karma.jpg6. A Picture of the Devouring Gloom Devouring the Spheres of Being

Added: May 1st 2018
Reviewer: Carl Sederholm
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 537
Language: english

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