Herbst9 – Buried under time and sand

The duo H. Emich and F. Merten from Germany founded Herbst9 in 1997. Since then they released two albums and a 12″ on Loki, as well as a 7″ on Drone Records, before creating their latest work “Buried under time and sand”. This album has frequented my cd-player very often, after I obtained it at the impressive Herbst 9 concert in Leipzig this Easter. It comes in a stylish digipack with nice artwork with all kinds of oriental textures and monuments.

Herbst9 treats the listener to over an hour of highly atmospheric ambient soundscapes, with a very dark, ritual sound. Many layers alternate and complement each other, gaining in strength and fading away again, building up a lot of tension. Various choirs give the music an almost sacred, gothic character. Deep dark drones, mysterious voices and samples, ritual percussion form a monumental unity which washes over you with unstoppable waves. You could say that Herbst9 uses all conventional elements of ritual dark ambient (comparable to various Cold Meat acts), nevertheless they have created an unusually impressive album. Ten fascinating journeys to ancient cultures and places (Babylon, Sumer, Assur), sonic archeology and time travelling. This is stuff that (dark) dreams are made of.

The first edition of 100 copies comes with a bonus dvd-r, with additional video clips accompanying three unreleased tracks and remixes. The graphic style and the solemn imagery (perhaps a bit cliche with gravestones on ‘Causa Mortis’) fit the sounds nicely, enhancing the ritual effect and somber atmosphere.

artist: Herbst9
label: Loki Foundation
details: CD / bonus DVD-R, 2005 [loki 39]