Album Review: Dark Sky Burial – Omnis Cum In Tenebris Praesertim Vita Laboret

The Breakdown

Dark and unsettling this is an album of industrial noises and electronic soundscapes developed from the torment of the last couple of years by one of the finest musical minds.

“Omnis Cum In Tenebris Praesertim Vita Laboret” is the 4th album from Dark Sky Burial, the new musical venture from Napalm Death’s Shane Embury. The album’s title translates as, “Life is one long struggle in the Dark.”

The dark ambient soundscapes and unsettling industrial noise textures, with disorientating, electronic moments were composed by Shane Embury with the help of long time friend, collaborator and producer Russ Russell and were tweaked into shape for the album at Parlour Studios in the 2nd half of 2021. The ideas and concepts for Dark Sky Burial go back decades for Shane but the events of the past few years have meant the project has been at the forefront of his mind.

He comments,

“It feels to me like destiny has a hand with almost everything I do nowadays. Life can be dark for everyone and to say the last few years has not been challenging is possibly an understarement but we all have our own personal journeys and quests we must go through.

I suppose this quadrilogy is an audio diary of the past few years for me – my father passing away, broken friendships and cutting away that which demands too much of your energy and trying to refocus that energy towards those who truly matter.”

The evil sounding ‘Omnis In Tenebris’ embodies all what this album has. The disturbing industrial noises and suspense filled synths. The track comes across much like a soundtrack with its ambient heavy and disturbing palette.

‘Mind Rat’ has a more electronic sound with bursts of bass but that swirling evil lies in the background giving the creeps. Flesh Altar displays the synthetic electronic noise. Industrial noises abound on this album too. ‘Necromanteion’ has grinding bass and shattering drum beats that build creating a great deal of tension. ‘Spirit Cleaver is the same’. A highly sprung track of industrial noise

The sound of distorted church bells ringing usher in ‘Splintered Reflective’ and along with ‘Nekyia’ they give the album a moment to breath. ‘Nekyia’ has a fresh feel to the track and with the huge drum beats, the track has a spiritual feel. Final track ‘The Heart Warrior’ melds demented piano with twinkling synths and stabs of nervous string sounds until it all boils over with spoken word and a celebration ending.

With Dark Sky Burial we find a different Embury to the rage filled Napalm Death one. Here we have a more focussed and controlled musician. The anger is there, it’s just less violent along with the frustration and depression from the last couple of years. The fact that this is the fourth album and third this year is testament to Embury’s creative mind and his ability to craft soundscapes that put into music his thoughts, feelings and frustrations of the last couple of years makes this another interesting experience to go along with the other three albums in the series.

Check out the opening track, below:

Find out more via Dark Sky Burial’s Website or Facebook

Purchase the album here

Previous Premiere: Stump's whispering foil Kev Hopper returns for Dimple Discs - hear the rubbery baroque pop excellence of 'The Dog Walker'
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