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Senmuth - Enigmatic Nubian Mask CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

3.02 | 3 ratings

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RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams
3 stars I don't like how it starts. "Kawumumbu" alternates minor and major chords in a way that I find disturbing and useless, but as it often happens, a Senmuth's album needs some listens and even though I still don't like the first 3 minutes of the first track I have to say that this album is not bad.

On the ethnic-ambient side of Senmuth, with a heavy distorted guitar behind all the tracks the album has a continuity that's not very common in Senmuth's albums. Unfortunately neither Wikipedia is of any help in understanding what the tracks titles are about, likelythey are name of places in Sudan (formerly Nubia at the time of ancient Egypt). The nubian masks are still typical of the local culture and I suppose the one on the cover sheet is "enigmatic" bacuse it can make you think to an alien even if to me it looks like a lion or a cat face.

Back to music now. The already mentioned"Kawumumbu" after the first minutes changes several times so that it can be considered a short suite, and the remaining parts are quite good.

"Aramahas" is opened by percussion with that kind of background noise that was typical of the first Senmuth's albums. It also contains the usual ethnic interlude that this time is an African tribal choir instead of the usual Indian instrumentals. The track then proceeds very dark. Not bad also this. Obsessive and repetitive, this time the interludes are not disturbing.

"Donhogol" starts as one of the interludes of the previous track but the music seems to be more inspired to the Maghreb than to the sub-Saharian zone. This track doesn't have the strong percussion heard up to now. It's more ambient-oriented but the distortion is omnipresent. It's like Senmuth has connected his vocal distortion kit to a guitar or a similar instrument. This track can be called "experimental".

"Nobinwago" has a melodic intro played by a strings instrument but it's followed by percussion and a keyboard with an unusual sound. After the intro we are back in the usual (for this album) distortion noise that starts looking abused.

"Obeidort" continues on the same line. Dark ambient made of subtle keyboards, obsessive percussion and heavy distortion. It has some nice moments but nothing special.

An average Senmuth album, surely not one to start with. 2.5 stars rounded up.

octopus-4 | 3/5 |


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