Thralldom
A Shaman Steering the Vessel of Vastness

Very superficially this could be described as Hellhammer simplified with samples, noise, electronic loops and droning guitars added. None of which is an improvement on the original. Thralldom hail from New York City and A Shaman Steering The Vessel of Vastness is their third full album. They claim to be dark death metal, more on that later. This is the second album of theirs that I have heard. I got Beast Eye Opened to the Sky in the mail for review when it was released, reviewed it and never looked back. The chaotic structure with electronic noise and simplistic guitar and ambient fuzz are all more prominent this time, making listening to A Shaman Steering The Vessel of Vastness an even less musical undertaking than the last one. They claim not to be a gimmick band and also say they don’t care about anyone’s opinions because they are making art. This art is an on again off again studio project with no live component that seems less than authentic. Supposedly this is the last album because they have disbanded but they have done that at least twice previously so don’t take stock in it.Beast Eye Opened to the Sky was neither bad or good, I simply was indifferent to it. The new album, no matter how much I try I just can’t get interested in, but it is more than that, I have a hard time listening all the way through. If I am in the mood for ritualistic trance music I have plenty of choices, bands that don’t overload on mindless electronics.

Supposedly this is all about hate, so therefore it must be black metal right? The two members of this project claim they are not black metal despite the fact that everyone else seems to think they are. I really do not get why they are considered black metal elite (even though the band claims they are not black metal, just elite). Thralldom is yet another American band that is supposed to save black metal from stagnation, supposedly up there on a pedestal with Leviathan and Xasthur, bands that Thralldom claim to not be familiar with. Killusion claims to hate 95 percent of black metal and thinks everyone else is juvenile. Jaldagar says he does not listen to black metal and is bored with all other metal and just listens to electronic music. Killusion also hates “noise gated chugga chugga pretty boys” and “almost every kind of modern metal.” Killusion also claims to hate “every asshole who picks up a guitar.” I guess that is why everyone thinks it must be boundary-stretching black metal. I’ll end with a statement that keeps the spirit of the band in tact. I hate it.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Grimulfr
June 19th, 2006

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