Album Review: The Stone – Teatar Apsurda

The Stone

The Stone’s eighth full-length release Teatar Apsurda is quite a late entry in 2017, being released under the new label Mizantropeon Records. With the recent interest in Serbian metal scene, encountering one gem after another has definitely left me hungry for even more metal out of this region, and Teatar Apsurda is a well-timed release to satisfy this craving.

Fitting to its namesake, the material on Teatar Apsurda sucks out all sense of hope and light, leaving one creeping alone in the dark in utter hopelessness and desolation. The straight-to-the-point intro of Gavranovo very quickly gives way to The Stone’s crushing brand of black metal, made all the more heavy and intense by the eerie atmosphere and complex arrangements that the band prefers to move at. Sure, the classic influences rear their ugly head once in awhile, but The Stone makes things more extreme, taking the traditional black metal sound to a more atmospheric, suffocating level. The huge guitar tones take cue from the Swedish school.

THE STONE - Teatar Apsurda - Front Cover

But not the entire album is made up of full-on crushing black metal, and it should be pretty obvious by now that the ambient of the music plays a key role in making The Stone’s formula so successful. Of course, apart from the relentless riffs and the heavy, pounding drums, this is done with the unique format of utilising Nefas’ vocals, which are equally ruthless and monstrous in their lyrical delivery, yet covering different vocal range to ensure a fuller vocal effect. The bass is thunderous as fuck, and the high presence, along with the low, heavy notes easily rattle the listener’s bones. Furthermore, the band occasionally utilise symphonic sections to complement or as a prelude to the chaos that hits the listener later, like moments in the middle of Gavranovo, making for a good mindfuck and ear-raping session. Songs like Mrtvog negativ even includes some atmo-death metal sounds with the riffing patterns, sounding like a more savage Ulcerate. The lead guitars, when present, are also often utilised to this effect, rather than truly a lead instrument per se.

Teatar Apsurda has definitely shown The Stone truly living up to their name, with the dark and crushing black metal that is contained within this record. There is nothing that is easy listening at all on this record, with the music constantly seeing the band pushing the boundaries of the listener’s sanity.

Teatar Apsurda is out on December 9 via Mizantropeon Records. Pre-order the album from this location.

Tracklisting:

1. Gavranovo – 7:36
2. Mrtvog negativ – 5:53
3. Moj grob – 7:09
4. Nuklearan – 6:03
5. Ja, car i bog – 7:17
6. Harmonija u haosu – 6:02
7. Teatar apsurda – 8:34

Line-up:

- Nefas – Vocals
- Kozeljnik – Guitars
- Vrag – Bass guitar
- Honza Kapák – Drums and Acoustic guitars

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