Atrium Carceri’s debut recording “Cellblock” on CMI was one bleak motherfucking tour de force of black ambience. I wrote those words exactly in my review for Bunty for Girls magazine. Bloody thing never got printed. Fuckin’ kids. With the follow up Atrium Carceri have produced an ever darker recording based on a lunatic asylum. They must have a ‘thing’ about buildings. I’ll going to cut to the chase here and just say that this is monumental. Nay it’s spectacular and awesome. “Seishinbyouin” drags you in to a nether world of subliminal madness and decay. Voices clear and distant rebound echoing off walls that drip water cutting a swathe through years of grime. A piano plays a lament to lost tormented souls whilst all the time an omnipresence of horror lurks nearby. The sense of prevailing evil is every where and souls long ago lost in an age of innocence despair at their surroundings. Things clatter and fall whilst orchestral music thunders and recedes. Shit I could go on about the beats, chants, and everything on here but there’s so much happening that you need to hear this for yourself.
If you want music to scare the crap out of you then this is ESSENTIAL. I‘m even sweating writing this such is the power that “Seishinbyouin” evokes. Black ambient lovers hail your new Gods.
Beauty and Pain
We have some unsettling sounds starting here on the 2nd release on CMI by Atrium Carceri. I would call them Dark ambient sound of Black Occultish visions. The 1st track creates complete mental anguish and its doesn’t seem to be stopping with the 2nd one. The bleak synth and uneasy industrial backdrops with voices of a madman and all his friends that seem to be in one head. This is one goddamn dark release by CMI. Ah now come in haunting piano moment and that still distant rumbling. The artwork here is another piece of stellar work. With the story line inside the booklet that can even make the strongest and bravest of us out there feel the pain and desolation for this soul. If you like Minimalist Haunting Dark / Black ambient like Kerovnian or Sephiroth then this is a must release for your collection.
This 14 track CD is full of unremitting despondency within two minutes of it beginning as the sound of decelereated, grunted vocals sound like the guy’s been rotting in a prison cell for the last fifty years, while the footstep-like muffled drums slowly beat in the distance, as clouds of cosmic electronics fill the airwaves with the ruthless effectiveness of mustard gas. Everything seems slowed down to almost nightmarish extent, as the slowly moving layers of electronics and space thunder seem to billow up and tower over the proceedings with an air of evil, so thick you can almost smell it. By the time of the third track, ‘Hidden Crimes’, the mood has mellowed to one of mere gloom, a light in the black provided by a lone piano melody amid waves of deep bass electronics that hang around your feet like dry ice, so heavy you can feel the boom resonate through the fibre of your very being, while the sampled voices now have distinct words attached to them, as every so often you hear doors opening and closing, what sounds like birdsong outside, but then becomes more like the ghostly machinations that are emanating from the corridors within. The sound of a slowly chanting electronic choir comes and goes, as the space thunder is heard all around, layers of electronics, samples and percussives forming this unrelenting slide into darkness.
On ‘Incubation’ the break-out is achieved and the sound of hope in the form of symphonic electronics and rising layers of melody, amid booming bombs of electronic explosiveness, create a way out of the darkness. But it’s short-lived as you find yourself traveling down tunnels that seem to fill with the sound of dark synthesizers, heavenly synth choirs, buzz-saw space electronics, and surrounding electronic drifts and drones, providing an almost hallucinatory experiences you hear slightly out-of-earshot voices at the far end of the tunnel and the sound of gorgeous waves of synthesized deliverance fill the air. On track 6, ‘Warden’, the first rhythm is heard – slow but solid, and an incredible sea of dark, booming space electronics with the bass thunder echoing all around, comes into play. Still, you’re less than half way through, and the rest is as hypnotic and enjoyable and experience and sound, as what I’ve thus far described – just experience it for yourself, and you’ll find that this album will be come one that you will play over and over again. My description sums up its feel but, musically, it’s so much more a listening treat than you would ever think from the way I’ve described it, totally unique, unlike nothing else around right now, and one sensational album.
This is the second album by Atrium Carceri. This act produces very dark ambient music that will keep you awake for sure.
Seishinbyouin means lunatic asylum in Japanese. As the title suggests Atrium Caceri takes you into the depths of a haunting and terrifying mental hospital. One that hasn’t been cleaned for a long time. One where the doctors and wards don’t look and act like normal people. And, one that you will remember forever, if you get out.
You will hear horrific screams and cries when entering the asylum. You will hear strange mumbling and water dripping from the walls when going deeper, and chains rattling and doors screeching when trying to get out.
The record is buit up in a well thought of way. It really tells the story from entering untill getting out of the asylum. Thus expect the music to become more and more intense while listening to the album.
This is an extreme dark musical score to your scariest nightmare.
Jesus H. Christ! There are times when you hear something for the first time and it just makes you want to shit yourself with excitement! Well, one listen to Atrium Carceri’s “Seishinbyouin” and you’ll be having one of those scary moments. “Seishinbyouin” (Japanese for lunatic asylum) leads you through mental darkness, with its eerie soundscapes. A very riveting listening, indeed.