Album of the Week 02-2012: Triptykon – Eparistera Daimones


A dark masterpiece. That’s what Celtic Frost’s swan song ‘Monotheist’ was. Despite liking their music, I was never an outspoken fan of the Swiss legends, but that record made me one. The slow, moody and pitch black dirges on that record were unlike anything I had ever heard before and while it took some time to grow on me, I wished them to continue this road forever once it did. Sadly, a dispute between Thomas Gabriel Fischer and the rest of the band effectively ended Celtic Frost. Fischer, however, quickly formed a new band called Triptykon and released yet another bleak and dark piece of art.

‘Eparistera Daimones’ is bookended by two monstrous tracks of monumental length. ‘Goetia’ (eleven minutes exactly) opens the album where ‘Monotheist’ left off: a long, moody intro builds into a Doom song in which midtempo passages and slow, hypnotizing parts go hand in hand to create the ideal overture to this soundtrack to human despair that won’t show any signs of hope for the hour that’s left after this song.

Almost a third of that hour is taken up by closing track ‘The Prolonging’, which Fischer had written out of his frustration about the demise of his former band. Remarkably, the extended piece doesn’t actually feel like it lasts almost twenty minutes. This song is the perfect example of the almost – for lack of a better term – meta-musical approach of Triptykon, with its long spaces between the notes they play and the guitar feedback that is used to its full atmospheric effect. Though the entire song is overwhelming and amazing, there are two climaxes around which the song seems to be built. First, there is the triumphant “as you perish, I shall live” passage around the nine minute mark and the part right before the extended feedback that closes the song, where the guitars of Fischer and V. Santura create such an intense, powerful layer of harmony and atmosphere, one can’t help succumbing to the atmosphere.

However, there is much more to enjoy than just those two lengthy tracks. ‘Descendant’ sounds closest to conventional Metal with one of the albums few solo sections near the end of the song, ‘Abyss Within My Soul’ – still near ten minutes longs – is a powerful Doom track and ‘A Thousand Lies’ is Fischer’s anger about Celtic Frost’s demise channeled into an aggressive song. On the more experimental side of the album, there’s the fully ambient mood setter ‘Shrine’, the ice cold, keyboards and electronics-led ‘My Pain’ and the slow, brooding epic ‘In Shrouds Decayed’, which seems to work towards a climax that doesn’t come…brilliantly.

Fischer and Santura – who also played with Celtic Frost on their last tour – have found themselves the perfect rhythm section for their unique sound. Norman Lonhard knows exactly when he has to play and when not and when he does, his powerful pounding gives the music exactly the correct amount of driving force. Vanja Slajh is slightly less noticable, because she plays bass with distortion and the guitars are already tuned frighteningly low, but she complements the music perfectly.

Often labelled a Metal record, but equally Avant-Garde (much more so than ‘Into The Pandomonium’), Goth and Ambient, Triptykon’s debut album should appeal to fans of all those genres. ‘Eparistera Daimones’ works best when listened to completely in the dark on headphones. The atmosphere of the music is guaranteed to take you away. Yours truly isn’t responsible for possible nightmares or insomnia, but trust me: it’s worth it.

Recommended tracks: ‘Goetia’, ‘The Prolonging’, ‘Descendant’, ‘Abyss Within My Soul’, ‘In Shrouds Dacayed’

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