Dren | Time & Form
Hard Art/Zoharum (LP/CD/DL)
This is one of those recordings that plays with all the colors in the Crayon box. Born out of a shared fascination of black metal and jazz music comes the Polish duo Dren and their debut Time & Form. From the very first second they bring a distorted toll of the bell. What exactly can be ahead in these eight tracks. The heavy atmosphere is layered, and on the lighter side of murky. They offer an abstract half-beat and a dragging post-rock quality to the opener. The record tends to the in-between of such, though there are underpinnings of drone, micronoise, and a whole lot of breath-laden atmospherics – not to mention there is an assorted funky quality woven through it.
The tribal beat on I Am A Pilgrim is rootsy, quickening with a snakelike glide. It warms you up right before the chilly wind factor is taken up several notches, literally, on Vermillion. And we begin a journey into something oozing with an aberrant gloom, as if we’ve dropped into a haunted tropical rainforest. With all the vibration up comes a completely unexpected quasi drum n’ bass riff. You might think pairing doom ambient with this passing genre of the latter 90s might be an awkward intersection, but au contraire.
There are quiet moody spots on this record (Form (Way of Perdition) and the striking closer, Terminus) but for the most part, the duo veers more towards being experimental with their output with polar combinations as mentioned. Their unassuming style is a blend that does not shy away from a deep dark beat, as in building ghostly rhythms that are as carnal as they are haunting.