After thoroughly enjoying 2017’s End of Chapter, I’m pleased to be able to hear some new material from Au-Dessus. Mend contains five tracks, with a duration of 26 minutes.
Making good use of sludge and post-metal elements in their sleek blackened sound, these new songs are modern and effective. The band’s style has become more refined and dissonant since their last outing, making for an EP that makes me want to hear a new full album from them.
This release is well-structured and has a good flow. It gradually becomes more atmospheric and especially more melodic as it unfolds; although these aspects are apparent in Au-Dessus’ music from the start, (as instrumental opener Negation I ably demonstrates), there’s a definite development in them over time.
Mixing withering speed and slower, angular groove, the songs channel a dark malevolence that seems almost tangible. As the music gradually brings more melody into focus, it brightens somewhat, delivering rays of hope amidst the broken gloom.