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jools green
21st December 2017
Jools Green

mist of misery

It's been an incredibly busy eighteen months or so for Swedish Symphonic Black Metal /DSBM outfit 'Mist of Misery' with the release of their second full length 'Absence' in August 2016, then the EP 'Shackles Of Life' this August.

Now we have this companion EP' Fields of Isolation', which I have been anticipating eagerly since the 'Shackles...' release.

The two EPs were written and recorded in tandem so the mood and feel is very similar to both and given how much I enjoyed its predecessor, for me this is a good thing.

They do vary from their earlier works somewhat, but there is enough familiarity and similarity across their catalogue to engage and appeal to all their fans.

It still has that well-crafted element to both the composition and delivery, with haunting blackened guitar melodies melded with the classical, garnished with exquisitely mournful keyboard passages.

It's heavily instrumental, with what few vocals there are very thoughtfully placed, mostly on the longer tracks but there's a good mix of both desolate tortured screaming, harsh blackened vocals, spoken passages and even chorals.

The overall sound has a serene yet mournful mood and a surreal atmosphere that you can easily lose yourself within.

mist of misery

It's difficult to pick a favourite track amongst these eight offerings, they sit and flow together in a very fluid and organic manner and if you like one you'll like them all, but there's a few extra points worth mentioning about the release.

The opening track 'Fields of Isolation' features a guest appearance from Paolo Bruno of Brazilian Depressive Black Metal project 'Thy Light'.

It's interesting that midway through the band have decided to cover 'Tortured by Solitude', by German one-man Ambient Depressive Black Metal project Coldworld, (Georg Bӧrner).

It's one of his most admired and covered pieces, understandable when you hear the bleak beauty of it and Mist of Misery have done a great job recreating the mood and atmosphere, remaining true to the original while still bringing something of their own to the piece.

'Shackles Of Life Part 2' continues from where the opener/title track of the previous EP left off, in some respects, but this time it's a just under the three-minute mark instrumental as opposed to the grandiose and melancholic seven and a half minute predecessor.

It adds a tie to the first EP, piano-led once again, less intense but equally as bleakly beautiful, just on a smaller scale, as its more of an interlude that goes on to flow into the classically derived, and decidedly cheerful 'Crystal Vapour Eclipse'.

1. Fields of Isolation
2. Across Empty Pastures
3. Hymm To Silence
4. A Drift in Cosmic Vacuum view
5. Tortured by Solitude (Coldworld Cover)
6. Shackles Of Life Part 2
7. Crystal Vapour Eclipse
8. Bottomless Grievous Caverns

Both these EPs have been intended as a way to bridge the gap between 'Absence' and an upcoming new album, scheduled to be released in 2018, so the future continues to look exciting and busy for Mist of Misery.

The EP is also the very last release to feature guitarist Erik (Phlegathon) who is stepping down due to being busy with recording and writing for the new Hyperion album. 'Fields of Isolation' is available now from Black Lion Records.




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