This is a very ambitious release – one track, almost an hour in length, documenting the last few minutes of someone’s life.
This is a supergroup of sorts, with various musical contributions coming from people who have played in bands such as Candlemass, Therion, Ephel Duath and Necrophagist.
Doom Metal/Funeral Doom lends itself well to a release of this nature. The fact that the vocals are handled by Mats Leven, (Candlemass), means that it instantly has a very authoritative sheen to it. His vocals are on top form as always, and he seems to enjoy himself in the vaguely theatrical Doom atmospheres that are evoked here.
The song goes through many permutations/phases and takes in 70’s-style Doom, Funeral Doom, Doom Metal, synth/keyboard highlights and Progressive Rock elements. While a song of this length by its very nature won’t be for everyone it works well and slowly builds and grows throughout the playing time.
The winding, repetitive nature of the song is hypnotic and slowly develops the theme and narrative of the piece.
This is not without its flaws of course; any hour-long song would have to be pretty perfect to be flawless, but for the most part this is an involving and enjoyable Doom-opera that’s worth the time that needs to be invested in it.