Tethra – Drown Into The Sea Of Life

After an ep and intense live activity over the past few years, Tethra lands on their debut full length, which is, at the same time, also the first release for the new Milanese label House of Ashes Prod. Formed from the meeting between guitarist Belfagor (Horrid) and singer Clode (ex-Coram Lethe), the band, completed by Miky (Vexed) on drums and the latest entrant, Giuseppe on bass, although relatively recently formed is actually composed, as one can guess, of experienced musicians and Drown Into The Sea Of Life is the logical consequence. Tethra’s music takes its cues from the more evocative Candlemass, often cloaking itself in shadowy death doom atmospheres, without conceding winks to easy melodies but showing mostly a leaden though not exactly funereal face; the songs, in fact, while obviously characterized by slow rhythms, never overflow into an oppressive heaviness. After the canonical instrumental intro, Sense Of The Night inaugurates the album by introducing Clode grappling with deep Ribeiro-esque tones, a characteristic that he will repeat throughout the work with good results, constantly alternating with more stentorian vocals and growl. This track, as well as the subsequent Drifting Islands, shines for its evocative power and proves to be a reliable indicator of a songrwriting capable of adequately engaging the listener. More rhythmic, on the other hand, is Vortex Of Void, although it is clear that the concept of speed in an album of this type is entirely relative, while the title track shows itself as the most elaborate track, with several tempo changes, the usual vocal variety and excellent guitar lines
If Ocean Of Dark Creations features a nice contribution from the bass, an instrument that is beautifully highlighted by the production by Clode himself and Mat Stancioiu, the subsequent Ode To A Hanged Man is remembered for an incipit with an epic flavor, although it proves to be slightly inferior in terms of emotional involvement compared to the context. This tribulated voyage into perilous waters (the lyrics of the entire album have the sea and the ocean as their main theme) ends with End Of The River, a worthy finale to a convincing work even if not the easiest to assimilate. What pleases Tethra is precisely this choice of theirs to keep in line with the orthodoxy of the genre, an aspect that can penalize the enjoyment of the album during the first few listens but ends up revealing its oceanic depth on subsequent occasions. A highly recommended work for those who appreciate doom in its most genuine and spontaneous form.

2013 – House Of Ashes Productions