Formed in the early nineties, Dutch band Celestial Season gained huge acclaim from their first two albums, Forever Scarlet Passion in 1993 and Solar Lovers in 1995. It wouldn’t be out of place to mention these albums along with ides other Doom greats such as Gothic by Paradise Lost and Turn Loose the Swans from My Dying Bride.
A combination of the two lineups used on those very albums created the band’s comeback album in 2020 with The Secret Teachings and now the band bring us the first in a trilogy. Each offering from the Mysterium offerings will have a different concept with Mysterium I following the route that The Secret Teachings set them along.
The steady and purposeful pace greats you as soon as you press play, along with haunting strings, before a vocal that you would hear in a Death Metal band begins. The deep and gravelly vocal is countered by the strings and as the drums begin to grow into the opening song, you can feel that this is a band that knows their craft inside out.
As the album progresses, you hear some glorious riffs and crashing drums as the songs take their time and let you truly invest in them. It’s almost as if each track is a living entity and takes its time, plotting its path and then treading through the murky and foggy abyss.
The album spans 44 minutes shared over 7 tracks and it flies by from the start. Being grabbed by this sound and having some sort of control over your feelings, Celestial Season has put all of their experience to practice here and created a captivating album.
Some Doom albums can feel rather samey and a bit of a trudge to get through, not this one. Everything feels thought out, everything has a purpose. The string section slice through the reverb yet still add to the downtrodden mood. Everything just works perfectly and it feels at one.
If this is what the Mysterium trilogy is going to offer then when the follow-ups arrive later this year and then next ear, we really ae in for a treat.
If people are wondering what Doom Metal should hear like, then listen to this. You will soon see that top quality Doom makes you feel as well as listen. Fans of Doom, you should know what to expect, but this may just be better than you thought was coming.
Mysterium Iwas released Monday 25th April 2022 via Burning World Records.