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Acrosome: Dementia Praecox
Depressive Black Metal
Dusktone Records
June 1st, 2011
Release length: 23:35
Acrosome is a newer Depressive Black Metal band that formed back in 2009 and hails from Ankara, Turkey. The group recently signed to Dusktone Records to issue their debut release, an EP titled Dementia Praecox. This effort lasts a good twenty three and a half minutes, and definitely shows the power to the band has to create a desperate atmosphere to their music very well. For this two member act, it’s obvious they know the direction they want to go in, but is it a strong enough effort to give this underground act enough of a kick to make the culture of the shadows that make up that world take notice?

First of all, this album has a pretty clean production quality to it. The music here sounds very sleek and pollished, and while that’s not always the norm for Black Metal records on a smaller label, the music benefits from the quality to set up a very cold and often oppressing atmosphere to the performances. The music itself is often subtle, and during spoken word passages becomes more Ambient then anything else, focusing on some simple keyboards to set up a traditional piano playing in the background against a cold wind with howling in the background behind the spoken word sections, which is the same howling utilized during the songs, leading to a very sickening sound that simply comes off as inhuman. These vocals are clear as well, and at the forefront of the recording so you can hear them clearly against the loud, clear music the band is playing.

Much of this release is set up in a manner that utilizes shorter track lengths, and finds ways to bleed one track into another. The band also utilizes heavy vocal distortion throughout the many spoken word sections of the EP, which is how the group starts things off. “Önsöz” introduces the listener to cold, grim, isolating ambient Black Metal in the background with a sinister, almost demonic sounding spoken word performance from the start of the song until the end. With that, the band sets the tone for what is to come. And that becomes more of a gripe then anything. Half the time Dementia Praecox just sounds like a well orchestrated Halloween sound effect CD. “Önsöz”, “DP 1898″, “Doktora”, and more all have spoken word passages, or are simply spoken word with eery effects in the background. While it works on “Önsöz”, it quickly becomes tiresom, especially when they constantly interrupt the emotion altering slower paced music of the song. “Farkindalik Reaksiyonu” does become the first song to not be interrupted, and it feels more like a concept effort since it bleeds into “DP 1898″ through the background ambience, which is fine and does help the spoken word tracks and segments linked to it, but at the same time it just gets old quick, especially in “DP 1898″ when they constantly interrupt some great slow paced depressive Black Metal to beat the demonic spoken word and background wails to the point it starts to become cheesy. “Doktora” even continues this, though not bled in from “DP 1898″, with the same kind of rhaspy voices, and what feels like a track suggesting demons or creatures eating, perhaps devouring a human’s meat from the bones.

Luckily, that’s all essentially dropped by the time you hit “Reaksiyonel Idea”. This track’s slower Black Metal approach will chill the listener right to the bone. It’s at this point the EP starts to make some sense, but becomes more infuriating just on the sense that all the spoken word passages that were set up to create an atmosphere to the recording seriously wind up having done nothing to enhance these sections at all. Of course there’s the track “Acrosome” that appears later, which again is some solid slower paced depressive Black Metal, but at the same time the witch’s cackel that start off the track, and then end it with a more lower, almost satisfied and taunting laugh really do just make it feel like this is the CD fans of Metal should play at their next Halloween haunted house, closing with another atmospheric instrumental like “Atenor”, having a very haunting sound that places the listener’s mind in a state of paranoia, painting a picture of standing alone in the woods at night with a creepy mist circling the body, wondering exactly what lies beyond the trees that surround you.

Acrosome definitely got the oppressive and depressive factors of their material down, but at the same time took it a bit too far. The ambient pieces to the recording really hold this EP back greatly, and at times can even make it sound cheesy. After “Önsöz”, those specific approaches at sinister beings should have been dropped instead of carried, especially since, while performed well, they got to the point where I personally started to find them comical and chuckled at the random wails that cut off the sinister voice that was speaking, leaving me to just picture a generally angry man in corpse pain stopped, and turning slowly to his partner with corpse paint howling right next to him, eventually pushing into a visual my mind could not surpress of this man taking the nearest thing, perhaps a rolled up news paper, and hitting him repeatedly with it in the same vein a Ralph Cramdon of the sitcom The Honeymooners. I mention this simply because this is what came to mind, though I went into it expecting a serious, well produced album, and understood that it’s what the final product was meant to be. Sadly, it obviously wound up killing much of the experience.

When the band focuses on really creating some good Black Metal, they do it well. “Raeksiyonel Idea” and on, as well as “Farkindalic Reaksiyonu” are proof of that. But the vocal effects the band tack on to the shorter songs with spoken word, they just don’t cut it after a while. In the end you’re left with roughly ten, eleven minutes of solid depressive Metal, and a well done introduction with “Önsöz” that does set up the EP nicely, but just seems to take a while to conclude. Dementia Praecox is far from a bad album and is definitely worth checking out, and perhaps the visuals you experience on some tracks will greatly differ from the The Honeymooners-type slapstick that the interruptions on some songs caused my mind to immediately gravitate towards. Acrosome have some potential, and it shows with well crafted music. But, everything else could really have been left out.

01. Önsöz – 2:21
02. Farkindalik Reaksiyonu – 1:55
03. DP 1989 – 4:35
04. Doktora – 1:17
05. Reaksiyonel Idea – 4:43
06. Atenor – 3:02
07. Acrosome – 3:15
08. Sonșz Р2:28
Overall Score: 5.5/10

Physical review copy of this release provided by Dusktone Records.
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