A drone escapes from a hollow. Beguiled, you investigate. Strange music whirs as you reach an old stairway. Prudent, you decide to turn back, but as the music amplifies, you become ensnared, and with a twitch, the cord becomes taut.
Dragged into the hollow by the opener, “Exordium,” you are pulled apart by strange string manipulations, chaotic legato and tremolo riffs, courtesy of guitarist Wecenclas Carrieu, while Léo Brard strikes frantic rhythms on his drums.
Vocalist Romain Gibet makes his entrance on the following track, the aptly-named “The Stirring Unknown.” His low and raspy vocalizations besmirch an already filthy canvas of notes.
Each track of “Echoing Chambers of Soul” adds new strokes and coats to an ever-changing picture of horror, where driving grooves are interspersed with anarchic guitar solos and more ethereal soundscapes.
At the midpoint of this coerced journey, you reach the “Waters of Absu.” A respite from the sonic extrusion experienced in the opening act; traditional death metal instruments make a sudden exit, leaving synths to fill the void with spectral recitations.
Just across the “Waters of Absu,” though, “The Engulfed Sepulcher” awaits, pulling you right back into a violent state of cavernous barbarity, until the very last beat of the climaxing “Voidgazers.”
The sum of the trio’s seven track performance is a densely varied and unfiltered blend of death metal. The culmination of a decade of musical communion that started in 2011, in the city of Rennes, France—far from the usual strongholds of death metal.
And as much as “Voidgazers” serves as the album’s climax, “Echoing Chambers of Soul” itself acts as the denouement of Cadaveric Fumes‘ career.
Indeed, it is not only the band’s first full-length release, but also their last. With the announcement of this title, Cadaveric Fumes exited stage left, leaving behind an eventful run in a field where, sadly, success does not always begets coin.
While this may not be the reason for Cadaveric Fumes‘s death, one can hope that, despite its quietus, the project may one day be resurrected, as “Echoing Chambers of Soul” left an indelible mark on an otherwise challenging year.