Ixion - L'adieu aux Etoiles
Finisterian Dead End
Atmospheric Doom
7 songs (38'11")
Release year: 2020
Reviewed by Alex

Listening to French Ixion L’adieu aux Etoiles I have slowly undergone the evolution of my appreciation of this album. After some frozen metal clanging serving as an opening to Stellar Crown, the band immerses itself into a somewhat familiar stately melodic death doom with growling vocals. Similarly, trembling bells and steady beat crushing into the meat of Havoc, or the first half of Farewell, particularly paired with the twin female angel / male guttural vocals remind me of Draconian even more. Dark floating serenity of The Black Veil, with the aforementioned vocal duality, reinforce the impression. Those, however, are not the moments that changed my impression of Ixion and not why in the end I came to enjoy L’adieu aux Etoiles, since it does rise above the average and moves away from the run-of-the-mill copycat.

The moments that make Ixion stand out creep in unexpectedly, but subsume the rest of the album and serve as the band’s calling card. The melodic deathdoom at times gives way to spacey otherwordly synth structures, and those, maybe surprisingly, round out the album into a complete picture. The synth ambient techno beat and space maiden voice in Stellar Crown, alongside deathdoom, is what makes L’adieu aux Etoiles interesting. The pregnant pauses, the cleaner piano of Havoc makes it less havoc and more depression, but they won me over. Blending electronics with doom in the midst of the rousing funeral melody, and coupling it with orchestral church organ on one hand reminded me of The Project Hate MCMXCIX, but cinematographic panoramic sound sets Ixion apart in The Great Achievement. The solar electronics continue in Progeny, and take on almost Ayreon style prog at the end of Pulsing Worlds, but it is the pinnacle dominant melody in Pulsing Worlds that absolutely took the top spot. Male growl and female tenderness (although no female vocalist is listed, and Ixion is on the surface a duo) is a perfect combo that makes Pulsing Worlds into a memorable hit and probably my favorite song on the album.

Although they do their doom well, it is the unusual that makes Ixion attractive. Cover art and album title (goodbye to the stars) explain drifting into space and exploring coldness and electronics. Perhaps I should have seen it from the very start not to be so pleasantly surprised with those themes later.

Killing Songs :
Pulsing Worlds, The Great Achievement
Alex quoted 82 / 100
Other albums by Ixion that we have reviewed:
Ixion - Enfant de la Nuit reviewed by Alex and quoted 79 / 100
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