I’m typically not someone who finds interest in depressive material, but it’s every now and then that I do come across some works that stand out just far too much for me to ignore. When it does happen, I feel particularly excited since it’s always with real emotion that they come across rather than just lyrical content trying to fit the theme of the style. While I do hope that the people behind this and every act of the style get the help they deserve and need, there’s no denying that the works they make are quite striking when well-crafted, and that’s precisely the case with the latest from Saxtorph.
It’s right off the bat that any listener who’s familiar with the style can tell almost instantly that this record follows a lot of the cues that have become practically synonymous with the sound since its beginning, and while variation can make for potentially more interesting work, a well-explored sound done well can sound quite fresh which is precisely what Saxtorph has accomplished on their latest work. The entirety of “When Depression Devastates the Dream” is about as desolate as one would expect from both the style and an album with such a name, and it’s through each and every moment of the six tracks spread across the near-hour long runtime that Saxtorph never once disappoints in its execution. Drawn out riffs with a chilling atmosphere that fits perfectly with the snow-touched rivers and hills that many think of when they picture Saxtorph’s homeland of Denmark, and it’s for every track in this record that the visage is done beautifully with the black metal being downright striking in even its smallest moment. It makes for a performance that really allows “When Depression Devastates the Dream” to truly cut deep into the heart and soul much like how the style was created to, and it would the definition of ignorant and insulting to insinuate anything other than stylistic grandeur when considering all that Saxtorph accomplishes in these bleak halls of soulful despair.
Whenever this style manages to crank out something that is worthy of diving into, there’s little argument to be had that when we’re to encounter is absolutely magnificent then there is no way to not become utterly encapsulated in the massive, swirling vortex of emotion that bands like Saxtorph commands with true mastery. A performance that’s representative of the best of what the sound can become, “When Depression Devastates the Dreams” is an experience that’s a guaranteed worthwhile listen for anyone interested in some of the darkest places for the soul to visit.
LISTEN to “When Depression Devastates the Dreams” on Bandcamp here.
LIKE Saxtorph on Facebook here.