DARK ESSENCE Nordic blackgaze crew offer few sideways glances Deafheaven’s Sunbather set a blackgaze benchmark few have surpassed, but Norwegians Avast are the latest to try. Opening with the title track they quickly establish a familiar formula; the harsh vocals of Hans Olaf Myrvang match the track’s furious rapacity, building to a tremulously wistful close, before instrumental The
Myth incorporates reedy, uplifting tremolos and soloing paeans. The World
Belongs To Man showcases Avast’s progressive potency, building amidst waves of percussion to a bruising, hardcore scuffle. Ultimately, Mother Culture blasts and rasps with aplomb, breaking down in hazily melancholic denouements in all the right places. But Avast fail to surprise, so this record is best described as predictably enjoyable.