Slán - Slán
Released: June 20
On what appears to be his first release on the Mines Clarence label based in Wicklow, Slán takes us through a dark and haunting journey guided by eerie strings and sparse percussive textures. The aura produced by this album reminds me of soundtracks for intense cerebral horror films like The Witch. It is altogether discomforting and stimulating in a manner that conjures up terrifying and unclear visuals with each tension filled rise and fall.
The album is sandwiched in between an intro and outro that are surprisingly calm and soothing compared to the rest of the runtime. Moving into the first track, "Dread Thud," we hear faint ambiance in the background with percussive thuds and a rattle that sounds suspiciously akin to the sound of bones rattling together. As we go into "Sore Eye," we get the first glimpse of those haunting strings accompanied by a mournful sound, almost like a human voice crying out from under a thick blanket of fog and moss. Then comes "Obelisk," which fully builds up a sense of tension with atmospheric rhythms played on ancient sounding drums. The final track before the calming outro, "Esperero Trail," sets up a strikingly similar tone with the addition of screeching strings that pierce through the soundscape.