Dimensional Bleedthrough

The critically acclaimed self titled debut from Krallice was an excellent and artistic addition to US black metal, not surprising considering the involvement of Mick Barr (Orthrelm)and Colin Marston (Behold… the Arctopus/Dysrhythmia) on guitars and bass (joined by drummer Lev Weinstein). However, with an even more technical and noodling, busy approach and less vocals and black metal tempo’s, Dimensional Bleedthrough actually seems like a step back from the debut, being less Ulver, Wolves in the Throne Room and Weakling based though still highlighting the skill of the duo, even at the expense of song writing.

On a purely musical level, Barr and Marston (now joined by full time bassist Nick McMaster) are unrivaled musicians as Krallice still bleeds a shrill complexity and layered nuance at every twist and turn, making Dimensional Bleedthrough a challenging listen that requires multiple attempts to fathom. But all that skill and intricacy come at the expense of songwriting and immediacy as the sheer wall of tremolo picked chaos that spills from the speakers simply never becomes as cohesive and enthralling as its predecessor.

That all being said, Dimensional Bleedthrough is certainly a work of art. With a far more post rock/shoe gaze vibe and large rangy moments of near instrumental wanderings, you get the impression that Krallice is far more about self lip service that actual songs or genres- I guess the ‘in phrase’ is ‘hipster black metal’. But whatever you call it, it remains a fact that Dimensional Bleedthrough is not quite the show stopping exercise in black metal art that Krallice was. Where Krallice had long, lasting moments of sheer musical bliss, like a sonic super nova, Dimensional Bleedthrough has many short bursts of excellence blending into one almost seamless trance, like a meteor shower up in the sky – there, then gone in the blink of an eye.

Tracks like the opening title track, later half of “Autochon”, “Aridity” and eighteen minute closer “Monolith of Possession” go many minutes without vocals, thus initially feel like purely instrumental tracks, lessening the ‘black’ nature of the material somewhat. But when it all does come together into one brittle blackened furor, like the middle of “Aridity” the pure fury of the short sharp track, “The Mountain”, you can see Krallice’s teeth slightly bared through all the progressive, experimental wanderings and layers- and it’s a thing of cosmic, star imploding beauty.

“Intraum” is just a tad too discordant and theres an eight minute shimmery instrumental track  that kinda suming up the overall effect of the album rather than the stunning but few and far between highlights.  As a result, where Krallice was a top 5 album from 2008, Dimensional Bleedthrough remains somewhat of a curiosity I’ll keep listening to, waiting for it to click as impressively and immediately as the debut did.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
November 30th, 2009


  1. Commented by: Sandwiches

    Agreed. Dimensional bleedthrough certainly hasn’t struck me as quickly as their debut. I still feel like I owe it a few more spins. And I might need to hear it after smoking a little weed too ha ha.

  2. Commented by: Cynicgods

    *Still digesting* *Chomp, chomp* BURP!

  3. Commented by: Storm King

    Oddly enough, I seem to be in the minority, because while I liked Krallice’s debut, it did have a certain sense of “tech nerds playing at black metal” to me, while this one is just sheer, mesmerizing brilliance. I could listen to this all day, and every time I do, it slides upward one more slot on my favorite CDs of the year list.

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