Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Karl Sanders "Saurian Meditation" (2004)

"Saurian Meditation" is the first of two solo records by multi instrumental musician Karl Sanders of the prolific, ancient Egypt inspired, Death Metal band "Nile". For the average listener this record bares no resemblance to the bludgeoning sounds of Nile's music, but for those who hear the cultural mysticism between the blast beats and growls will know this record draws from the same inspirations.

The music is rich, ripe with cultural instruments and sounds that illustrate a vivid folk music we associate with ancient Egyptian culture. Scuttling Sistrums, tambourines and Tombaks narrate rhythms of pace that roar with the crash of giant cymbals as guitars, lutes and lyre's pluck affluent mystic melodies in eloquent, lively soundscapes that takes you to the ancient times of past in a manor so vivid your imagination needs little fuel. Images of mortal gods, serpents, hieroglyphics, seas of sand and the pyramids are painted with sound.

Not so much can be said for hooky melodies or grooves, this is not a theme or hook for modern music to execute ideas with. These songs are moments, passages that sway, contract and expand as Karl expresses ideas relevant to the times hes inspired by. The result is substantial, a brilliant work of music that resides inside itself, never conforming to modern musical ideas and exploring the ancient mystic world through cultural instruments and rich musicianship that pulls together songs from lush layers of sound flowing in unison. Theres variety in the ten tracks that make the record up and the final track brings in a distorted guitar leads in the Nile tone that sees a dark song climax with a distant roaring solo to end the record on a high and pay tribute to his band as this journey ends.

Favorite Tracks: Awaiting The Vultures, The Elder God Shrine, Temple Of Lunar Ascension, Whence No Traveler Returns, Beckon The Sick Winds Of Pestilence
Rating: 7/10