Verhoren is based out of Arizona but has more in common with such Swedish acts as Raison d'Etre and Desiderii Marginis; the project's debut is a subtle masterpiece of funereal church organs, echoing footsteps, and industrial ambience. After gloomy opening track "Draining My Life Away," the album then progresses into a concept album wherein mankind's mistreatment of the ocean, and by extension the environment as a whole, leads to our own demise, ending with rising sea tides that wash away the evidence of human history. Ranging from the metallic twinges and mechanical drones of "Nuclear Shorelines" to the blurred church bells and haunting organ reverberations of "The Procession," it's all bleakly beautiful, but perhaps the most stunning piece here is the apocalyptic "Alone in Autumn," with its marching footsteps eventually overtaken by haunting, cinematic string pads and stark piano lines. Also impressive is penultimate composition "Oceans Arisen," which adds just a hint of contemplative electric guitar to provide contrast to the layers of choral pads and organs. As a sort of postmodern requiem mass for human civilization, this isn't party music, but for fans of the sort of apocalyptic soundscapes that represent the end with a whimper rather than a bang, this is just the thing.
Visit this project on MySpace at www.myspace.com/verhoren.
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