Before I even started writing this review I wanted to get a few things right first. It took me a little while to find the correct art for this Australian doom based monolith. Nothing seemed big enough you know? I mean, have a look at it. The black, the grey and all the shades between; this is a dirge for the bleak and a masterstroke of willful madness.
That was a pretty casual start wasn’t it?
Inverloch are a bigger name in metal than most will remember. There are those who know where the group started and what name led devastating doom to the masses, but it’s not all an evolutionary story; Inverloch have their own breed of doom. It’s fantastically dirge-worthy. From the ashes of dISEMBOWELMENT, Inverloch rose bringing with it waves of emotive composition and thought-grabbing atmospheric nuance. ‘Distance | Collapsed’ is akin to a boat floating on an ocean, lonely, resolute and uncaring. Let go of the paddles, there’s no need for a struggle. Simply let the waves carry you endlessly from one wave to the next. It’s night, there are stars above but no guide as to where you’re actually going. It’s a beautiful scene; one that Inverloch paint perfectly with their dissonant display of death inspired doom. I’ve always been a sucker when it comes to this particular style of doom metal. Whether it’s the hour long funeral dirges in the vein of Monolithe or Until Death Overtakes Me or the crushing style of Eye Of Solitude and the melodic portrayal in Shape Of Despair, the doom genre has always struck a chord with me as a listener. Inverloch’s 2016 piece only strengthens my bond as a doom fan. Often underrated my metal fans, doom showcases a band’s ability to blend talent with brilliant song-writing and atmosphere. More often than not the compositions created invoke emotion in the listener, building on the powerfully crushing riffs and dissonant bleak tomes. For these ex-dISEMBOWLEMENT members ‘Distance | Collapsed’ earmarks a band already fine-tuned for success.
For the year 2016, ‘Distance | Collapsed’ is a highlight from start to finish. From the record’s opening Inverloch make it clear that their brand of death inspired doom metal has the highest repeat value. Inverloch simply don’t overplay their hands with an album that over-reaches or outstays its welcome. Listening to Inverloch is an uncomfortably comfortable feeling. ‘Distance | Collapsed’ is accessible, but true to the roots of doom metal, bringing together everything that is aesthetically pleasing for doom fans everywhere. There’s no Sabbath inspired feel, nor is there a need to reinvent the wheel – instead Inverloch focus on the music they do so well. Despite only being forty minutes in length, ‘Distance | Collapsed’ is not too short an affair. The music is concise, to the point and welcoming… as far as the doom genre goes. Each component is placed according to the group’s overall feel for the music they want to write; it’s a beautiful thing.
With so much going on it’s hard to define Inverloch’s 2016 piece with just a single track. Each track delivers an unyielding display of devastation, playing to the natural contrast that develops. Nothing is forced, sounding quite natural from start to finish. ‘Distance | Collapsed’ only lets up the atmospheric intensity when it feels like it, and honestly that’s not too often. ‘Distance | Collapsed’ defines itself in this way.
Anyone reading this wall of text would find it peculiar that I can compare Inverloch’s latest release to a boat ebbing and flowing in water, raised and lowered by the swell, directionless in its beauty but it allows a perfect metaphor for the overall feel of the record as the atmosphere coupled with the instrumentation draw the listener one way and then the next. Sometimes the “sea” gets rough, choppy and threatens at fatality, but there is a beauty in the controlled chaos of the ocean. ‘Distance | Collapsed’ is a highlight of the year 2016, living off atmosphere, basic doom aesthetics and intelligent atmospherics. Modern doom still has a lot to show its listeners.
http://www.nervegas.com.au/inverloch–distance–collapsed-cd – BUY