Stellar Master Elite
Hologram Temple

Well,  at least I know that Germany’s Unholy Conspiracy Deathwork label knows how to package an album. As with label mate’s Der Rote Milan‘s Moritat, the fourth album from home land act Stellar Master Elite comes in some intriguing packaging, a black embossed  2mm black carton premium digipack, with 3 black foil prints on all sides and a 240mm x 240mm poster as booklet, that looks impressively evil when adorned with the band’s logo. Unfortunately, like Der Rote Milan (with whom SME shares several members), though stylistically reversed, the packaging is the most memorable element of the release.

Where Der Rote Milan played modern black metal with some atmospheric, doomy moments, Stellar Master Elite play a form of occultish black doom metal, with plodding gloomy structures laced with some traditional frosty black metal moments. Mind you, not a  depressive, suicidal rending black metal, just……slooow black metal, that’s neither rending or depressive. It’s well produced, with an menacing, patient actual low end and a few ritualistic, haunting segues here and there (“Agitation- Consent-War”), but little else.

At an hour long, the ritual is a drawn out lengthy affair, and to these ears, has minimal payoff. Other than the more direct and sometimes death metal rumble of “The Beast We Have Created” or ” Celtic Frost-ish canter of “Black Hole Dementia”, I was never really peaked by any of the riffs or songs. The 15 minute closer “Tetragon”, does exactly what you’d expect, taking several minutes to get going with throbbing, pulsing keyboards and atmospherics in attempt to build the ritualistic mood, then exploding into a decent black metal explosion then more throbbing atmospherics for a few more minutes to close out the track and album, but I got bored 6 minutes in and threw on a Schammasch album instead.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by E. Thomas
September 10th, 2019

Comments

  1. Commented by: Benjamin Simard

    Music is so-so but the band name is great – but only because they completely aped it from the excellent song of the same name by Thorns, a far superior black metal act. It’s kind like if Armored Saint named themselves Creeping Death instead.


  2. Commented by: Terramotus

    How good was Thorns though?! Miss those guys in a big way. Ahhh, the golden years of Moonfog Records.


  3. Commented by: Glenn Whitehead

    Chord progressions are simple and predictable, which is DOOM, not Black metal. The singer has a great Black Metal rasp…shame this isn’t crazier and more energetic. It sounds huge, so there is that!


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