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Telesterion: Epopteia

Epopteia is my second encounter with Telesterion, a doom laden, post-metal outfit who so far have kept their identities and location of origin under wraps. The band’s releases come themed, and while this review lands after the event, I’ll let them explain what their intentions were…

“This album is inspired by the Greater Eleusinian Mysteries and is the culmination of everything we've done so far. Starting on September 30th (the 15th of Boedromion on the Ancient Greek calendar) and ending on October 8th, with Epopteia will release one song every day for 9 days following the rites of the Greater Mysteries as interpreted by the modern calendar. We will be making announcements every day on Bandcamp and guiding listeners through the experience. We hope to create an interactive journey for listeners that's memorable and educational on the ancient mysteries.”

Now, I can’t really pretend to know much about the era the band seem to seek to reside in, or the significance of the mentioned dates, but that Telesterion are trying to do something a little different and build a fan-based community in the process, should be very much applauded. More importantly they also have the musical heft to back up these lofty ambitions, with epic soundscapes that steamroller with a real sense of intent and latent melody captivating the imagination. The previous dalliance I’ve had with this outfit - the EP Myesis - while excellent, did seem with hindsight a little boxed in by a similar staggered release schedule, with each track following similar evolution from start to finish, and while I’m pretty much certain that was intentional, it has ever so slightly hampered subsequent visits. Here that issue is thankfully left by the wayside, with the results being a much more cohesive album that offers light and shade as it grinds and gnashes. Aggressive and yet really not, the strength in the likes of “Hither The Victims” or “Festival” is the threat that seems to reside underneath the surface. Telesterion need not to hammer their attack into your face, and instead caress and seduce with gentle but forceful persuasion. With the vocals more often melodic, swirling chants and long instrumental sections that are grand and epic in proportion, there’s no doubt that we are thoroughly in the realms of the atmospheric with this album, and it has to be said that at volume, it can become a heady experience.

Impressive and immersive, Epopteia should be the vehicle that drives Telesterion to wider, deserved acclaim.

Track Listing
1. Gathering
2. To The Sea
3. Hither The Victims
4. Festival
5. Pilgrimage
6. Revelry
7. The Descent
8. The Search
9. The Ascent

Added: October 26th 2023
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Telesterion @ bandcamp
Hits: 661
Language: english

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