Sometimes records sit in the review pipe for no good reason for a very long time. And get passed over time and time again, just to be rediscovered more by accident than by design. This so happened with the Dying Ones from the Czech Republic.
In 2014 Et Moriemur unleashed a pretty underrated Doom Metal album called Ex Nihilo In Nihilum. Just to get a re-issue very late in 2016 by Minotauro Records.
So, why feature this album on the blog now, so very long after the fact?
First, because they are good at what they do. There is no mistaking the doomy flavor in everything present on that disk. Et Moriemur adroitly mix contemporaries like My Dying Bride and Vanha with a whiff of early Tiamat.
And they squeeze this bitter lemon of sorrow until there is no teardrop left to shed. Their melodies are well crafted with an abundance of hooks, riffs, and solos, located in a lush soundscape where sorrow runs free. And you will have your fill. Proper Doom Metal, Funeral Doom, Doom Death Metal – all there.
But at times, I was missing the grit and grime. Sharp edges that will bleed character into a record. Their tune indeed feels like being in a house that is way too squeaky clean. And where everything inside is painted white.
The record also exudes a certain level of sterility, a lack of emotion even if the band tries to inject some with gusto – in Liebeslied for example. However, for some reason, the emotional part of this piece of doom evaporated to somewhere in space.
In other words, projecting emotion is damn difficult. Some succeed extremely well with real passion, and others don’t quite get there. Now take Ex Nihilo In Nihilum. The band pulls all the right levers for sure. Yet for some reason does not reach these depths of emotional turmoil that others did.
Now, there is no denying the outstanding quality of the record.
Great songwriting and remarkable production, the band took great care to deliver. And they don’t lose any time. The ride down tear lane starts already with Sea of Trees. No silly intro, either. Even if for a moment I had this horrible feeling the track would embark on some long-forgotten cover Nazareth did back in time. After that one there is no holding back. You’ll get monologues, Doom Death growls sprinkled with tasty riffs and the occasional subdued solo.
And are there any highlights?
Sure, Ex Nihilo in Nihilum has them, too. For starters, the aforementioned Liebeslied stands out of these dark great clouds of sorrow like a black monolith. But Nihil – the 9+ minute behemoth, is a real delight to listen to. A spicy little progression gets you to a growly entrance into the bosom of this track. From there just let this wave of woe roll over you. Clear voice, growls, and monologues, all there.
Lastly, let me point out Black Mountain the 16 1/2 minute epic that somehow got appended to the bitter end. Whilst suffering from an inherent lengthiness, it captures the essence of the record pretty well.
Ultimately, Ex Nihilo in Nihilum is indeed an accomplished record. Almost flawless in execution, Et Moriemur present you with a truly epic and juicy morsel of true doom. The band covers pretty much the full spectrum of the genre, indulging in carefully crafted, opulent melodies that pull all registers the doom universe offers. Great doom, even if the emotional roller coaster so necessary to success somehow lost itself on the way.
Ed’s note: Fancy more of that? Try their Japanese incarnation.