As a person who’s obsessed with collecting CDs, one of the criteria I mark the chosen ones by, is the artwork. It must be convincing and expressing the music beneath the fancy packaging. The bond between the visual and the sonic components is vital. In this sense, I came across Paramnesia’s self titled debut album, whose cover art is truly captivating and captures completely the essence of it.

“Paramnesia” was released through Les Acteurs De L’Ombre Productions (see The Great Old Ones – Tekeli-Li) earlier in 2014. It is outlined by two tracks with an average duration of 20 minutes each, in the vein of blasting atmospheric black metal.  The artwork is provided by Business For Satan, whose mastermind (Pierre Perichaud) is the drummer of the band. I do recommend to check out the rest of his works for they are as mindblowing as this one.

“Paramnesia” might not be an album that is to be grasped within a first listen and a bit more effort is needed to entirely get into its core. Although, I stated above “atmospheric”, it is in fact more rabid than aerial, with heavy low-tuned guitars and crushing drumming that portray nothing but ravaging dark emotions. Oppressiveness is a dominant caused by the sorrowful yet muddy vocals that fall right into place, with the small exception of fading out a bit much for my taste. Other than that, the musical direction Paramnesia have taken to enrich the black metal nature with a slightly avant-garde deviation, could not be a better decision. 

To me, this album is about leading the listener into a scenario where the darkness is what is left illuminating the ashes of our wrecked world. There is nothing else but bitter silence. This is what left me thinking of after the intense instrumentalism I was listening to for the past 40 minutes…

In a nutshell, “Paramnesia” reflects mature musicianship and a great deal of potential. Characteristics that are likely to be met in bands who have got a long list of records, with many years spent in moulding their style. Make your first impression below and keep in mind that the album is up for free download.

Les Acteurs De L’Ombre Productions, release: 16.04.2014
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1. IV
2. V

Total running time: 40:15