Dvne - Asheran
Wasted State Records
Stoner Doom
8 songs (60' 35")
Release year: 2017
Reviewed by Andy

Perhaps it's the particular headphones through which I've been listening to Dvne's latest (the package they came in advertised "extra bass", which I'm already starting to regret), but the band's flange-inflected bass does play a fundamental part in the heavy alt-doom that makes up their sound. Asheran, the band's first full-length, mixes a stoner-metal influence with surprisingly delicate lead guitar picking, resulting in a murky sound and wandering songs that put atmosphere before an easily-resolved melody.

But that's not to say that Asheran isn't melodic. Victor Vicart and Dan Barter's clever picking patterns in Sunsets Grace makes up almost the whole song, and while the song sort of goes around in circles, it's an enjoyable carousel ride. The two guitarists' voices alternate between clean choruses in a soulful voice and a roared, distorted style dubbed over itself on the verses. But the emphasis is very much on the instrumental work. The overdriven guitars and flanged bass mostly overpower any detailed work in the drumming, which usually only gets its fair share of the production when it's using the snare.

While the chords used in the main bulk of the songs are towering behemoths used for tenderizing the listener into tasty morsels, this isn't the band's primary focus; Viridian Bloom and Descent of the Asheran are only two examples of many tracks here that begin with a clean, introspective melody, with no apparent indication of the heavier and more chord-driven remainder of the songs, or even where the song is likely to end up. Asheran ultimately won't coalesce into a solid enough mass for traditional doom fans to like, but Mastodon and Baroness fans may find some satisfying ground covered here.

Killing Songs :
Descent of the Asheran, Edenfall
Andy quoted 84 / 100
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